The Singleton of Glen Ord 40 Years is the grand finale of The Epicurean Odyssey series. It started with a Glen Ord 38 Years and 39 Years, each getting an additional ageing in specific casks.
For the 40 Year Old they used “solera” barrels from Zacapa XO and Zacapa Royal rum. As you know, Zacapa belongs to the Diageo umbrella, just like The Singleton. The starting point was a 12 year old Glen Ord, so the ‘secondary’ maturation lasted a whopping 28 years.
Singleton of Glen Ord 40 yo (45,9%, OB ‘The Epicurean Odyssey Series’ 2023, Zacapa XO and Royal Rum casks, 1716 btl.)
Nose: immediately satisfying, but very complex. I’m getting rummy sweetness, raisins and milk chocolate and Jaffa cakes, alongside whiffs of tobacco and heather. Dried apples, orange peels and plummy notes. Then dusty old barrels, subtle dried herbs and a gentle waxiness. Then lighter top notes of bergamot tea and mint leaves too. Drops of pine liqueur. Interestingly it doesn’t scream ‘rum’ to me, but that doesn’t matter at all.
Mouth: still rather refined and dry for such a long rum treatment. There’s some (pleasant) woody sourness, leading to marmalade, leafy notes and raisins. Nutmeg, crushed black peppercorns and ginger, mixing with dark chocolate. Then hints of mirabelles and pineapple as well. Drops of herbal liqueurs again. Almonds gradually moving towards walnuts in the end. A rather warming profile, creating an autumnal whisky.
Finish: long, with mild oak spice (peppery warmth), more waxy touches and a dark sweetness underneath.
Interesting whisky. It seems sherried, but it isn’t. At times it seems a little over-aged, but in the end this impression fades – it simply adds complexity. Down the line this is a rather fragile but rather unique combination of a zillion tiny notes, finding a nice equilibrium. A great Singleton release. Available from the Malts.com online shop of course, or from Master of Malt or The Whisky Exchange and a series of local retailers.