19 May 2010
Glen Grant 5 yo 1974
Posted by: Ruben Luyten In: Glen Grant
A couple of decades ago, whisky was bottled at a much younger age than today. This Glen Grant 5yo is a good example. The fact that it mentions a vintage year was less common, but a few of these Glen Grants have that, especially bottles sold in Italy, Spain and Portugal.
This is a good occasion to mention the Old Bottle Effect. While whisky will not change after being bottled, after many years the glass can start to interact with the spirit. There are a lot of doubts about this OBE (was it related to old distillation methods like direct firing, does the air inside the bottle have an effect or is it just the glass, does the light have an influence, etc.) but there seems to be a general consensus that there is an effect. Common OBE changes include lower peat levels, a certain dustiness / mushrooms and metallic notes.
Glen Grant 5 yo 1974 (43%, OB 1979
for Sileno Portgual, 75 cl.)
Nose: starts on porridge with a few mineral notes. Slightly metallic as well. Quite a lot of lemon. Wet books. Faint hints of motor oil. Interestingly, these notes are mixed with a nice tropical fruitiness of lime, apricot and passion fruit. Mouth: quite weak, with mostly the malt speaking. A few herbal notes come out, a few flowery notes and some liquorice (the wood, not the candy). Develops on apples. Not a high-flyer but not bad either. Finish: completely on apple juice (rather spectacular) but quite short.
Difficult to score. On the one hand, this is not up to modern standards in terms of density and flavour complexity. On the other hand I love those old noses and it drinks like lemonade. Sadly, I’m not living in Madrid any more, because this would have been perfect for a hot summer day.