Campbeltown-based distillery, Glen Scotia, has unveiled its oldest and rarest limited-edition liquid to date, a 46-year-old single malt Scotch whisky with only 150 individually numbered bottles available worldwide.
Originally laid down in refill bourbon casks and gently matured for 36 years before being re-casked in first-fill bourbon casks in 2011, the liquid has then been finished for four years in Oloroso sherry butts, giving it an elegant and velvet-like finish. Tropical fruits, subtle maritime nuances and creamy notes encapsulate Glen Scotia’s signature distillery profile.
The remarkably aged expression, from the distillery awarded Scottish Whisky Distillery of the Year at the Scottish Whisky Awards last year, pays homage to a precious time in Glen Scotia’s history while celebrating the craftsmanship of a different era.
In the winter of 1974, the Glen Scotia distillery team would finish their last production amidst a four-year programme of investment that spelt opportunity and a profound sense of optimism in the town. These final years would also mark the end of a special chapter, defined by tradition, care, craftsmanship and an old way of doing things. It was these final casks that have laid quietly maturing under the care of distillery managers until today.
Presented in a luxurious handmade oak display case, inside an oak tile rests beneath the bottle holding a plaque which includes the individual bottle number and tasting notes. In partnership with luxury glassmaker, Glencairn, each bottle has been tastefully etched, a gold metallic coin bears the traditional Glen Scotia knot, and a heavy metal stopper completes its exceptional presentation.
Bottled at 41.7% ABV, with an estimated retail price of £6,750 per 70cl bottle, the release is set to draw attention from global collectors looking for a slice of Glen Scotia’s artistry in whisky-making.
To mark its release, Glen Scotia has partnered with distinguished whisky figurehead Dave Broom to uncover the tale of this rare dram in a short new film, shot at the distillery’s dunnage with Distillery Manager and Master Distiller, Iain McAlister, delving into the history of the expression and its roots in Campbeltown.
While the distillery is gaining global award recognition, the region, known as the ‘Victorian whisky capital of the world’ thanks to its superior production capabilities, is also enjoying a renaissance as consumers return to experience the exceptional quality of whisky made there.
Whisky writer, Dave Broom said: “This is such a remarkable liquid: more than just age, it is a time capsule that tells you about how Campbeltown and Glen Scotia have changed over the years.
“The whisky has the tropical fruit funkiness which only comes from long ageing in refill casks - evidence of that original intention of using it while young, filled with those Glen Scotia oils and salinity. The subtle, sweet, toffee elements mid-palate reflect the change in direction when mature, elegant single malts were desired, while the rich sultana like fruit harks back to the late 19th and early 20th centuries when sherry casks were the preferred choice for Campbeltown’s whiskies.”
Glen Scotia’s Distillery Manager & Master Distiller, Iain McAlister, added: “It is wonderful to contemplate that we have inherited these last remnants from those who have helped shape Glen Scotia’s journey and been part of our history. The release of the Glen Scotia 46-year-old is a toast and a thank you to the craft of all those who have come before us.
“It is an honour to pick up the mantle for the distillery and be able to unveil these rare few bottles, which are so full of the classic Glen Scotia and Campbeltown character. As we celebrate a particularly notable year in Glen Scotia’s history with multiple recent award wins, it feels only right that we release some of our most treasured liquid this year.”
Glen Scotia 46-Year-Old Release tasting notes
- Nose: Rich dried fruit and citrus peel, thick sweet toffee balanced with bracing ocean spray and fresh vanilla
- Palate: Velvet mouthfeel with layers of melted brown sugar and golden caramel, baked apple, and poached pear in vanilla syrup with orange citrus notes
- Finish: Long maritime finish with sea salt and waves of warming cinnamon and nutmeg spice
Available to purchase via the Glen Scotia website, click here.