Special Releases 2016, Glenkinchie 24yo

door | november 9, 2020

Another week, another review of one of the Diageo Special Releases 2016. Again it’s a “Classic Malts” whisky. Despite being one of the classics I don’t think I’ve ever tasted a dram of Glenkinchie. What a way to have a first encounter with this distillery. Peter did have a 20cl bottle of the standard 12yo once but that was some years ago. We’re both very curious about this sample so let’s get started.


Glenkinchie is a Lowland distillery that was founded in 1837. It has been producing whisky almost continuously since then. Only the two world wars brought a short pause.  In 1914 this pause was used to expand and rebuild the distisllery to become one of the five “Lowlanders” in Sottish Malt Distilleries. The stills were converted to steam heating in 1981 and in 1987 Glenkinchie became the Lowlands representative in the Classic Malts. Glenkinchie uses two of the largest stills in Scotland. The washstill holds 32000 litres!

This particular whisky was distilled in 1991 and was matured in European Oak sherry butts for 24 years. It’s the third Glenkinchie expression to be released in the Diageo Special Releases series but it’s the first time European Oak matured Glenkinchie whisky is used. It also is the oldest cask strength released Glenkinchie in the series. This edition is limited to 5928 bottles at an ABV of 57,2%.

Peter and I tasted this whisky seperately and these are our thoughts,

Notes by Peter

  • Nose: First some sweet and fresh fruit with some sour edges, caramel, apple and tropical fruits.
  • Taste: Warm, full. Applesirop and spiced bisquit, raisins, caramel and again the tropical fruits.
  • Finish: Long, warm and sweet, almonds, apple and a tea like mouthfeel.

A very nice Christmas dram! One to enjoy at the fireplace. I’m sure I’ll taste some more Glenkinchie in the future!

Notes by Jeroen

  • Nose: At first nutty and a hint of glue (Velpon). I let it settle for a while and the glue disappears. Ripe apples, peach, oranges, lime and some almonds.
  • Taste: Creamy mouthfeel, nice body. Smooth arrival with some ginger and cinnamon, but not too spicy. Nice balance in that. Caramel, apples and a hint of citrus. Vanilla notes as well. It reminds me of a homemade apple pie.
  • Finish: Medium length, a bit of a drying sensation with some caramel sweetness. The apple pie memory remains.

I like the fact that I was able to taste this Glenkinchie whisky. At a pricetag of 300 GBP this normally wouldn’t be a whisky that would fit my budget. Thanks Diageo Netherlands for the sample! 

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