Glen Spey… one of the most obscure distilleries in Scotland, right? In the heart of Speyside (Rothes), part of Diageo, producing malt whisky for J&B and other blends, yet it’s very much under the radar of whisky enthusiasts.
Very little bottlings as well, it has been four or five years since I tried my last Glen Spey (a few good ones though) and I’ve never had modern production like this Glen Spey 2004 bottled by Gordon & MacPhail.
Glen Spey 2004
(46%, Gordon & MacPhail Connoisseurs Choice 2013, refill bourbon barrels)
Nose: fresh but shy and neutral. Apples, vanilla, lemon, but all very light. White flowers. Citrus green tea. Fennel seeds. Tropical fruits, they say on the label, but I can’t detect them. Not much happening here.
Mouth: same feeling. Bright, lots of lemony notes, apples, alongside some vanilla and pepper. Mint. Hints of bitter grass and roasted malt in the end.
Finish: short, on grapefruit zest and pepper.
Bummer. Not exactly flawed, just very dull and uninspired. A style that’s kept deliberately light – useful as a blend filler, but I wouldn’t have selected this for a single malt bottling. Around € 50.