GlenTurret is a distillery which many whisky fans hold dear. You do not see it appear a great deal in posts and reviews however you are constantly aware of its impact.
It was the core of the Famous Grouse Blend owned by Edrington Group who also own Highland Park and The Glenrothes and Macallan. GlenTurret was the home of the Scottish Whisky Experience. This was originally opened as only the second Visitor Centre in the industry. I believe that there is an intention at some point to move this along with the connections with Grouse to another centre but announcements on this are awaited. You are still able to visit the distillery which runs some of the best tours.
As well as being one of the oldest (with records going back to 1763) and most attractive distilleries, great store is held by fans of Master distiller Bob Dalgarno who previously spent 30 years at Macallan.
GlenTurret owes much to its past. It is a small distillery with a single wash and a single spirit still. It has always made great whisky.
Glen Turret distillery and the associated Visitor Center facilities were bought in 2018 by Art and Terroire an arm of Lalique crystal part owned by a Swiss entrepreneur who also owns several prestigious vineyards. company, who have had a relationship with the Scots whisky industry providing the exceptional decanter type bottles in which the oldest and rarest of whiskies are frequently sold particularly by Macallan. The Grouse brand is retained by Edrington. Part of the sale ensured the continuity of the workforce which is noticeable in these releases.
Glen Turret is named after the river Turret the banks of which it is situated on. Their new approach heralds ‘Trinity’ describing their brand statement of Provenance, Prowess and Passion making small batch whisky matured in dunnage warehouses with undoubted quality and taste.
This Tweet Tasting would feature 3 spirits all 2020 maiden releases along with a sample of the new make spirit. The process includes relatively small stills, a long (100 hours) fermentation, slow distillation and dunnage warehouse and a reputation for using great casks both American and European Oak some ex sherry.
I always welcome the opportunity to sample a distilleries new make spirit to understand the true nature of the distillery process and flavour and style objectives.
Glenturret New Make 63.5%
New make is spirit straight from the still. Crystal clear its flavour can vary considerably but those that can be drunk pleasantly tend to display a baby nappy type slightly sweet, musty agricultural small.
The Glenturret is amongst the most drinkable being more grassy and fruity and honeyed.
On the nose a pile of fresh cut grass, with a coating of caramel and lychee. A strong estery aroma.
The palate is toffee apple, fruit spangles and chilli spice, rather lovely quite drying in the mouth probably because of the high alcohol. It is a substantial new make spirit with the desired flavours from the fermentation well focussed in the distillation to deliver great potential to the casks to do their work.
This new make provides a strong backbone to both play its own role and support the cask influence through to the final whisky expressions.
Glenturret Triple Wood 43% 92020)
Matured in both European and American sherry casks.
On the nose: Digestive biscuits, tobacco, floral – blossoms, apples, rhubarb dipped in cinnamon a rather lovely aroma with very slight hay notes typical of youth.
The palate delivers oak, lapson suchong tea, black cherries, stewed fruit, coffee, chilli spices a well balanced and enjoyable whisky.
This is an enjoyable well priced whisky. It has great flavour and texture, it ha some youth but the quality of the spirit carries this off perfectly.
Glenturret 10 yo Peat Smoked 50% ABV
The nose is powerful straight into smoke and peat! I smell almonds, a citrus note and honey.
The palate reveals creamy apple tart, berries, lovely sweet peat, heather honey, marzipan and a jammy apricot note and chocolate. A lovely complex balanced peated expression.
The finish reveals lots of tannins, very dry with spicy chillis and nutmeg.
I enjoyed this peated expression. Glenturret have always had a talent in this area. It is a very pronounced peated whisky but is well balanced with fruit, sweet and spicy flavours.
A good expression in an increasingly competitive market.
Glenturret 12 yo 46% ABV (2020 Maiden release)
Matured in European Oak
The nose delivers a malty note supported by , sherry, dried fruit, raisins, treacle sponge, almonds, orange note , vanilla lovely!
An oily malt with substantial mouth feel
The palate is sweet majool dates, sponge, pineapple, kola cubes, almond, oranges and vanilla mirroring the nose well. Blind I might have guessed older than its years. It is a complex well balanced dram. In the Christmas by the fire category
This was my favourite whisky of the evening and for me delivers everything that GlenTurret has always stood for.
Every whisky delivered something quite unique but the aromas and flavours of the new make spirit was clearly there. Although traditionally a lighter fruity whisky I especially enjoyed the deeper darker more ‘Christmas cake’ flavours of the 12 year old and the triple wood and the peated expression was well crafted.
These are well made whiskies in the true Glen Turret Trinity tradition. I look forward to many more. The range also includes a15 year old and 25 and 30 year olds. Given the balance of spirit and cask notes in the 12 year old, the 15, 25 and 30 must be fabulous.
with thanks to Jamie Morrison of GlenTurret for the samples and Steve Rush of Tweet Tastings for the tasting.