Not too long ago we reviewed GlenDronach Cask Strength batch #1, and now there’s a new batch 2. Again a vatting of oloroso and Pedro Ximénez matured casks and bottled at a marginally higher strength. I’m comparing it head-to-head with my bottle of batch 1.
According to GlenDronach’s Alistair Walker, the new batch exceeds the expectations set by the old one. Let’s find out whether that’s marketing babble.
GlenDronach ‘Cask Strength’
(55,2%, OB 2013, batch #2)
Nose: initially very similar, so far so good. It’s only on a second level that differences become apparent. The new batch is a little less bright and prickly at first sight and a bit more cocoa-like. Still packed with raisins and toffee. Batch #2 also has a little more mint and charred oak, but it looses some of the rummy banana notes. Slightly flatter and less fruity, but generally the same quality.
Mouth: Same evolution from fruity notes and honey over cocoa towards spices (ginger, aniseed, chilli) and herbs. Slightly more emphasis on the herbs or grains, while batch #1 seemed a little fruitier again. Is there a hint of smoke in this one?
Finish: long, on Jägermeister herbs, liquorice and bigger oak spices.
It’s good to see they could replicate this winning dram. No huge differences I would say, but the first one leaves a slightly brighter, fruitier, more elegant impression. In my opinion batch #2 can’t claim it’s better than batch #1, it meets the expectations but it certainly doesn’t exceed them. Same pricing: around € 65 again.