In April 2022 GlenAllachie distillery presented an 8 Year Old whisky at the bottom end of its core range. The GlenAllachie 10 Year Old (which I found a tad aggressive) is quite successful and the younger sibling aims to follow in its footsteps.
The composition includes Pedro Ximénez and Oloroso sherry puncheons, but also virgin oak and red wine barriques.
GlenAllachie 8 yo (46%, OB 2022)
Nose: very sweet with lots of fruit gums, raspberry candy, Italian susine jam and the aromatic hints of rosé wine. Baked apples with raisins. Then some wood shavings, caramel and cinnamon. Really modern and easy-going, made by a spin doctor.
Mouth: less convincing now. Caramel toffee, raisins and some burnt sugar notes (including a light bitterness). Then quite some fresh oak (virgin wood?) and candied ginger, as well as clove. Stewed apples with molasses and hints of chocolate. In the end black pepper takes over.
Finish: medium, with sharp woody notes, chocolate coated nuts and syrupy fruit notes.
Slightly disappointing in my opinion. The sherry influence is fine, but the virgin wood adds a sharpness that reminds me of a blended whisky. Aromas are decent but there’s little integration. I can see how an 8 Year Old fills up a commercial gap at the lower end, but I think it’s just a rough sketch of what GlenAllachie can be. Available from The Whisky Exchange or Master of Malt among others.