Matured in ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks, this single malt earned a score of 94 points from the Beverage Testing Institute.
Situated adjacent to the Burn of Rothes in the Speyside region of Scotland, The Glenrothes Distillery was founded by in 1879 by James Stuart, who had previously been employed at The Macallan Distillery. The distillery's history is marred by tragedy — in 1897, construction workers who were attempting to expand its capacity started a fire that consumed much of the distillery's equipment and infrastructure. Twenty-five years later, a fire in the distillery's original warehouse caused the loss of 200,000 gallons of maturing whisky. Despite having lost ten copper-pot stills in various accidents since its founding, the Glenrothes Distillery is now a picture tranquility.
Glenrothes Single Malt Scotch Whisky is made from plump, ripe Scottish barley, which is malted and fermented using water sourced from the Ardcanny and Brauchhill springs (the springs are situated adjacent to the distillery). Following fermentation, the grains are twice distilled through Glenrothes' copper-pot stills. The stills, which were designed and fashioned to be exact replicas of the original stills installed in 1879, are incredibly tall and uniquely shaped, which contributes to the overall light and sweet flavor of the whisky. After distillation, The Glenrothes' stillmen remove the heads and tails of the distillate and preserve only the "hearts" for maturation (the hearts comprise less than 20% of the entire distillate).
Unlike other Scottish distilleries that bottle their whiskies with an age statement, The Glenrothes Distillery bottles its whisky with a vintage statement. This method of bottling, which emphasizes maturity rather than age, allows each expression of Glenrothes Single Malt Whisky to have its own unique characteristics and personality without being encumbered by its ancestors.
The Glenrothes Single Malt Scotch Whisky 1995 Vintage was the first vintage of whisky ever laid to rest with the specific intention of being bottled as a Glenrothes Single Malt vintage. The whisky was matured in a combination of ex-bourbon (70%) and ex-sherry (30%) casks. As a result, it has a medium golden color, along with an aroma of citrus, butterscotch and maple syrup. The aroma gives way to notes of sweet red fruits (including plums and berries), vanilla and rich spices on the palate, and leads to a long finish with a touch of caramelized sugar and honeyed oak.
The whisky earned a score of 94 points from the Beverage Testing Institute in 2013, and a score of 92 points from the Ultimate Spirits Challenge. In addition, it was recommended in Ian Buxton's 101 Whiskies to Try Before You Die.
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86 (43% ABV)
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Medium golden color. Aroma of citrus, butterscotch and maple syrup. Sweet red fruits (including plums and berries), vanilla and rich spices on the palate. Long finish with a touch of caramelized sugar and honeyed oak.