The Glenrothes makes a range of vintage single malt whiskies, including the 1998. This whisky was distilled in 1998 and spent 12 years in barrel before being bottled in 2010. The 1998 Vintage was Gordon Motion’s first bottling as the Speyside distillery’s Malt Master, and due to its tropical fruit notes, he describes it as “Carmen Miranda’s hat in a bottle.” Mental image noted, we dove right in.
On the nose, The Glenrothes 1998 Vintage is lush with pineapples and mangos, plus a hint of vanilla. On the palate there’s banana, coconut and dried cherry, all mingling with a faint background of sweet caramel and spicy cinnamon. The finish is long and dry with a nice balance between spice and vanilla.
Overall, good stuff. It’s got more character than The Glenrothes Select Reserve, but is somewhat less nuanced than the oaky, honeyed 1985 Vintage. Hats off to Gordon Motion for bottling a whisky that so delicately balances tropical fruits with vanilla. We think we’ll have another glass.
– 43% Alcohol by Volume