Single malt whisky - tasting notes

02 Mar 2010

Glenrothes 18yo 1990 (SMoS)

Tasting notes by Ruben Luyten - Posted in Glenrothes

Single Malts of Scotland bottled three 1989 / 1990 casks of Glenrothes last year: one bourbon hogshead and two refill sherry casks. This Glenrothes 1990 cask #3331 (refill sherry) was the first in the row.

It’s interesting that SMoS chooses Glenrothes casks with a very light sherry influence since nowadays most of the independent bottlings seem to be heavily sherried.


Glenrothes 1990 SMOS #3331 Glenrothes 18 yo 1990 
(46%, SMoS 2009, cask #3331, 785 btl.)

Nose: a characteristic Glenrothes nose with butter toffee and some dry flowers but punchier than most official releases. Freshened by big hints of orange juice. Nectar. Something that reminds me of Swedish mustard. Hints of roasted nuts. Cake. The sherry influence is certainly there, but it’s very subtle. Mouth: not too bold. Quite malty and sweet. Spicy (nutmeg, herbal sweets) with hints of liquorice. Interesting roasted / bread crust notes in the aftertaste. Finish: rather long and spicy, with beautiful candied notes, even hints of violets.

This bottling shows a slightly different side of The Glenrothes. An all-round charmer. Around € 50.

Score: 82/100

Glenrothes 18yo 1990 (SMoS) 3 Ruben Luyten 2010-03-02
  • Gal

    I first had the chance to sample a GlenRothes last week.
    it’s indeed a nice one. ( i had th Select Reserve) , have you tasted that one? how does it compare to this one?


  • Ruben

    Yes I have a bottle of the Select Reserve. It’s much more typical with notes of butterscotch, toffee and overripe oranges. Let’s say the SR is not my favourite Glenrothes.

  • Gal

    what do u recommend that i try (glenrothes range that is)

  • Ruben

    Try to find the new Glenrothes 1998. That’s a charming whisky and quite cheap. But remember the true excellence of The Glenrothes is really in the 1970’s vintages.

  • Gal

    Ok i will try that.
    as for the 70’s i dont think i have the budget or the sources to really be able to buy a bottle.

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November 2015
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Coming up

  • Amrut 2009 (cask #2701)
  • Glenlivet 1981 (#9468 for TWE)
  • Lagavulin Distillers Edition (2015)
  • Talisker Distillers Edition (2015)
  • Laphroaig 32 Year Old
  • Glen Grant 65yo 1950 cask #2747 for Wealth Solutions
  • Mortlach 1959/1960 (G&M Royal Wedding)

1933 notes by Ruben

WhiskyNotes - Ruben LuytenThis blog is my personal collection of impressions, written while searching for the ultimate single malt whisky.