By Richard Thomas
As a very nearly inflexible rule, I don’t do reviews based on samples taken at tastings, conventions, festivals and such. The reason is simple enough: I like to take my time to get to know a whisky, and you simply can’t do that there. This is to say nothing of how much your nose and palate go downhill after a while. Yet even after a long day of sipping, you can still pick out a few items that make you say “Hey, I want to get back to that!”
That is exactly what I said about Glenfiddich IPA Experimental at Whisky Live Paris 2016.
William Grant & Sons’ Brian Kinsman collaborated with Speyside Craft Brewery to specifically create the IPA that was used to fashion this cask finished single malt. Plenty of tinkering in terms of coming up with the right beer and how long it should be used to season the casks went into ultimately putting the IPA finish on the Glenfiddich malt.
The Glenfiddich IPA has a golden coloring in the glass, that standard Scotch look of an especially rich white wine. After coating the inside of the glass, the liquid streams plenty of thick legs.
The nose comes endowed with a richly fruity, apples and pear scent, accented by wildflowers and a lightly hopped character. It’s a surprisingly elegant scent.
In terms of flavor, the fruitiness takes on a more citrus-driven aspect. The mouthfeel is light, but creamy, and this melds nicely with the supporting vanilla note. Rounding things out is a nicely contrasting, hops-driven bitterness on the backside.
The finish is malty sweet with a touch of IPA-style bitterness, and winds down warm.
The Glenfiddich IPA fetches about £45.