Last month, Glen Grant announced the Five Decades Limited Edition Single Malt Scotch and made a large media push to announce it. I had my hopes up for this, all things considered, but it fell short. The taste was average, but only that exciting.
The Five Decades is characterized by an appearance of light golden barley, and a bouquet melding vanilla, honey and Oloroso sherry. Once on the tongue, the Five Decades instills tastes of honey and orange blossom, with intensely creamy sweet toffee and raisin fruit. The finish is smooth and lingering, with continued notes of fruit. While this may sound amazing to some people out there, it conflicted with my tastes, particularly the fruity ascents. That's just me. For the price they're asking, I would go a different route. By the way, the price is high and you can find different price points around the Internet, but the pitch listed it at $250. No thanks.
For those who are still interested, here's the PR pitch and link to the site.
Stepping into the Glen Grant® distillery, one is overcome with the feeling of entering a whisky cathedral. The tallest pot stills in the world rise up in a line like organ pipes. Decades-old wooden barrels line the maturation warehouses like pews. And at the center of it all is Dennis Malcolm, perhaps the most experienced Master Distiller in Scotland, Father of the Scotch Religion and champion of whisky as it should be. As the category has blossomed, even the finer single malts have been drawn into whisky purgatory, engaged in a seemingly endless battle to over-peat and out-darken each rival expression: gimmicks that are meant to catch eyes, not taste buds. Malcolm is determined to bring crafters and connoisseurs alike back into the light by producing Scotch in its most original form: a classical and easily drinkable spirit with a beautifully light appearance.
Dennis Malcolm has spent 50 years chasing this goal, in the distillery in which he cut his teeth as an apprentice cooper at age 15. In celebration, the Master Distiller of the Glen Grant Speyside Distillery brings to you his Glen Grant Five Decades Limited Edition Single Malt Scotch Whisky. Whisky disciples rejoice! Five Decades is a single malt specially crafted to pay homage to his five decades of experience with Glen Grant; this ‘Unique Selection of the Finest Vintages’ is the marriage of the most valuable Glen Grant casks from the past 50 years, carefully hand-selected to deliver the distinctive smooth, fruity and rich taste experience for which Glen Grant is renowned. Dennis has hand-selected his favorite casks, which he personally laid down over the last Five Decades (1960s, 1970s, 1980s, 1990s and 2000s). By marrying together these slowly aged casks, each of which has reached its peak of maturity, he has created a rich yet mellow Single Malt with unusual depth and complexity.
The Glen Grant Distillery was established in 1840 in the town of Rothes, and is now the proud proprietor of an entirely Barley-to-Bottle process: all whisky, including the Five Decades, is bottled at the distillery, meaning local Speyside water is used in distillation and hands are locally sourced. In addition, Glen Grant boasts some of the tallest, most slender pot stills in Scotland, which are perhaps most key to the Glen Grant Five Decades’ signature light appearance. The process is a product of gravity: to double distill the whisky, the fermented solution must be boiled to reduce volume by evaporation. With shorter stills, the vapor somewhat counterproductively falls back into the liquid, whereas a taller still allows the vapor to rise and escape- thus the pristine appearance of the single malt. Each still has a ‘purifier’ that further refines the character of the spirit making it refreshingly light and easy to drink.
“We believe in- nay, swear by- producing Scotch in its most pure, most classic form at the Glen Grant Distillery,” says Dennis Malcolm. “Glen Grant Five Decades is the embodiment of our devotion, being a culmination of each of the best vintages from every decade I have spent in this beloved hall of whisky excellence.”