I sampled Glengoyne’s 17 Year Old tasted at Nihon recently. Glengoyne, located North of Glasgow, is known for a slightly more unique approach to its Highland Malts, they use air-dried barley instead of peat smoked dried. Hmmm…no peat? I have to admit, there was a little skepticism mixed in with my curiosity upon learning that.
The Nose: Soft, slightly floral, candied lemon and citrus notes…at times pleasantly reminiscent of Fruit Loops. There’s an anise/Pernod quality as well, and since I’m name-dropping heavily manufactured, high-fructose, brand-name kids’ foods, I might as well add Good N’ Plenty’s to the list. A bit of oak as well, and coupled with the citrus, some nice Earl Grey/Bergamot tones. There’s also just a faint whiff of smoke.
The Palate: Kind of surprising in that it tasted far simpler than the nose lead me to believe. It tasted like…well, it tasted like single malt scotch. A nice light, slightly oily mouth-feel, some pepper and spice, some, not much, but some smoke, some burnt-orange and citrus notes. Nothing too unique or for that matter, rewarding here.
Finish: Medium, a little pepper and smoke. 17 years in wood comes through here more, but frankly, If I’d spent 17 years in a wood cask, I’d want someone to know a little sooner than the finish.
Thoughts: Smooth, balanced and proper in all the right ways but in the end, I was unimpressed. This is a light, social, aperitif scotch, refined, quaff-able and uncontroversial, not that I need my malts to be revolutionary firebrands, but very little stood out to make it an excellent dram.
Glengoyne 17 Year Old, Highland