Ended up splitting a bottle of this.
So you may be asking what I’ve always been asking: What, or who, is Adelphi ‘The Glover’ 18. Who is Glover? Is is Danny or Donald Glover? Because they are very talented.
Well, no. And this may take some time, so maybe throw on Community or Lethal Weapon to help follow along.
So first off, Adelphi is an independent bottler of good quality. So far, so good.
But who is the Glover then? Well this is named after a man, Thomas Blake Glover. The man worked for Jardine Matheson, the largest British company trading in the Far East during the mid 1800s.
And he goes to Nagasaki as the company’s lead man. In this day and age, he’d be just another otaku from the West wanting a subservient girlfriend. Back then though? Japan had followed a strict ban on foreign trade and external influences at the time. So it’d be like volunteering to head the Jewish defamation league in Iran at the moment.
But good ole Thomas shows up, and he starts working and operating to try and entice those Japanese leaders who want the western technology and want to trade.
I’ll not go into his many (and there are many) achievements in trade with Japan, however let’s just say we wouldn’t currently have any products from Japan if not for his work. So great was his work that he was the first ever non-Japanese person to be awarded the Order of the Rising Sun. The petition to recommend him for the award included 20 pages listing his accomplishments.
So why name a whisky after him? Well it’d have to be one that represents the amazing whisky that has to do with Japan and Scotland.
Or a simple way of putting it: It’s a marriage of Casks from Hanyu, Longmorn, and Glen Garioch. Distilled in Scotland & Japan, blended in England, and bottled in Scotland.
34.999% of the blend is Longmorn American oak ex-sherry casks, and a teaspoon came from Spanish oak ex-sherry butt distilled Glen Garioch. The remaining 65% is Hanyu single refill ex-sherry hogshead. I only know that this is a mix of Glen Garioch, Longmorn, and Hanyu. The above was incorrectly told to me.
Because Scotland has rules against this type of thing, it was blended in England.
Hanyu is a completely different story. Originally the company was built in Hanyu, eventually producing whisky in the 1980s. Just in time for the 80s to knock the whisky industry out of it’s stirrups. After the 90s gave us a single malt. And then in the year 2000 they stopped producing, and then in 2004 they tore the place apart.
You may have heard of the Ichiro Card series. If you’re lucky enough to have tried one, I personally hate you and wish you ill due to my jealous nature. They sell for a pretty penny.
So. this is the closest I’ll come to having this rare malt. Let’s see if it’s all pomp and circumstance, shall we?
Price: N/A at the LCBO. We paid $224.96 from Keg n Cork, who are the only ones who have it in Canada
Region: Scotland and Japan
Age: 18 year
Colour: 5Y 9/6
Nose: Cheesecake, floral, papaya, pine, peach cobbler, white cake
The initial cheesecake smell is very powerful. Smells exactly like making one, fresh out of the oven. Fat me wants to stop for a cheesecake now. Skinny me doesn’t exist and may have been eaten by fat me.
After the initial sweetness, there’s fruit, floral, and dull, sweet notes. Non saccharine may be a better way of saying it. Cake-y may be better. None the less, tasty is the right word.
Taste: Blackberry, oak, apricot upside down cake, caramel, sourdough, mint cream
More tart and less sweet than the nose. There’s elements of bread and mint here, with creaminess at the end.
I’ve had Longmorn before and it was very very sweet. So I’m to assume that the Hanyu has a sweet, but more balanced profile.
Or at least this one cask did.
Finish: Caramel, red apple, pepper steak, cherry, celeriac, butter, coleslaw
Earthy, but not in a bad way. There’s still some heat, some meat, some butter, and some fruit to balance it out.
It reminds me of eating a very, very high end meal where they’ve used red fruit and properly made meat. Granted just about everything reminds me of eating these days.
Conclusion: This goes from a very sweet nose, where we can handle it, to a balanced taste, where we want some sweetness, and finally a finish, where the sweetness stays just enough to balance against the other main flavours.
I can honestly say that a Whisky that does that, be it bourbon, world, or Scotch, is extremely rare. I’ve had ones that will jump about, ones that have hundreds of flavours, and ones that set off memories.
This is new and interesting. And worth trying. Hell worth buying, immediately.
World Whisky review #166, Japan review #29, Whisky Network review #808