Food & Dining

Glenmorangie 12 YO Malaga Cask As Compared to 12 Year Old Glenfiddich

The highly collectible Glenmorangie 12 YO Malaga Cask will never be repeated. It is one of the biggest releases in Whisky Club history. The Glenmorangie 12 YO Malaga Cask has a supreme balance. It is deliciously sweet and syrupy all thanks to a finish of four years in an extremely rare Malaga Cask. Glenmorangie's 12 YO Malaga Cask has a dark walnut brown color and an astonishing heady aroma. The nose will pick up chocolate, syrup pudding, cinnamon, and dried fruits. The mouthfeel is a beautiful syrupy texture. Again with notes of milk chocolate, cinnamon, and dried fruits, as well as honeycomb and ginger. The finish is mellow and nutty, with hints of hazelnut, honey, and gentle oak.


What makes Glenmorangie's 12 YO Malaga Cask so rare and unique is the use of Malaga dulce casks. The area surrounding the ancient Spanish city of Malaga produces amazingly sweet wines. With the popularity of dessert wine taking a drastic fall in the late 20th century, the sweet wine industry surrounding Malaga almost disappeared. It has not become one of the world's rarest fortified wines. This is why Malaga casks are almost never used in Scotch whisky. However, the Director of Whisky Creation was able to get his hands on a small number of casks. The Malaga dulce casks come from the sweeter end of the spectrum of Malaga wine. The multitude of sweet and syrupy flavors the cask could provide drove the decision to fill them with the finest eight year old Bourbon matured whisky. The four years spent in the Malaga casks brought the flavors of the sun kissed south of Spain to whisky lovers new and old.


Glenmorangie's 12 YO Malaga Cask sells for $135.00 per bottle.


Glenmorangie Distillery sits in northern Scotland on the banks of the Dornoch Firth. It is said that the residents of the nearby township Tain in Ross-shire have been brewing spirits since the Middle Ages. Alcohol was being made at Morangie Farm as far back as 1703, but it wasn't until 1730 that a brewery was built at Tarlogie Springs, the farm's water source. These springs still provide Glenmorangie Distillery with mineral rich water, adding to the fruity flavors of the whisky. In 1843 William Matheson took over the farm and set to converting the brewery into a distillery with a pair of second hand gin stills. Prohibition and the Great Depression impacted exports to the U.S. severely. Then World War II created shortages of fuel and barley leading the distillery to close from 1941 to 1944. By 1948 Glenmorangie was running at full capacity again. Most whisky went into blends like Highland Queen but there are some records showing a single malt being exported and on sale at venues around London. It wasn't until 1959 that the distillery made a pointed effort into Single Malt that would soon pave a path to being the biggest selling distillery in Scotland. The demand for Glenmorangie whisky has spawned multiple expansions that continue to this day. The Director of Whisky Creation, Dr. Bill Lumsden, leads the team with a "What if?" philosophy encouraging everyone to be inspired by whatever captures their imagination.


The 12 Year Old Glenfiddich on the other hand will have a golden color. The aroma will be fresh and fruity with a hint of pear, all delicately balanced. The sweet and fruity notes develop into the taste of butterscotch, cream, malt, and subtle oak flavors. The finish is smooth and mellow.


The whisky is matured in European oak sherry casks and American oak casks for 12 years before being married for 9 months in uniquely sized oak tuns to create its sweet and subtle oak flavors. Only the best part of the distillate is used, using an unusually high cut point that is clean, estery, sweet and fruity.


The Glenfiddich Distillery was founded in 1887 by William Grant. For 20 years, Grant nurtured the dream until, with the help of his family and one stone mason, they built the distillery by hand. It took a year to complete and Grant named it Glenfiddich which is Gaelic for Valley of the Deer. During the heart of Prohibition, Grant's grandson, Grant Gordon, joins the family business and surprises everyone by increasing whisky production. After the law turns, Glenfiddich is one of only six distilleries still in operation in Scotland and ready to meet the surge in demand for a fine, aged whisky. In the late 1950s, coppersmiths were brought on site to maintain the uniquely sized and shaped copper stills, and a dedicated cooperation was built up. The importance of casks is developing exceptional whisky is not to be underestimated. The onsite cooperage is one of the few to remain in distilleries today. It wasn't until 1963 that Glenfiddich started to be actively promoted outside of Scotland. Consumers outside of Scotland who are used to drinking blended whisky are delighted with the single malt. In 1987 the distillery celebrated their 100 year anniversary with a centenary bottling to commemorate William Grant and his dream. Only four years later, Glenfiddich releases one of the most collectable rare whiskies of their 50 Year Old. It was a perfect combination from nine casks laid down in the 1930s. In 1998 the Solera Vat was created, which is still awarded to this day for complex and intense flavors. A rare 64 year old malt whisky marks Glenfiddich's next milestone. Cask 843 was watched over by ten consecutive Warehouse Masters and left only 61 bottles of the whisky. A limited edition single malt was released in 2010 born from a collapsed roof from extreme snowfall. Out of the casks rescued from the extreme weather, the finest are selected and married to create Snow Phoenix. Eleven bottles of Janet Sheed Roberts Reserve were auctioned for charity in 2011 setting world records for the most expensive single malt. Glenfiddich is one of the unique few distilleries that is still family owned.


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