Glen Garioch 1992 Whisky-Doris bottled for Heads & Tails

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The other evening I was fortunate enough to sit down with Igor from Heads & Tails with /u/devoz and /u/muaddib99. They probably posted theirs right away, and I have a backlog.

And alas, or alak, whichever you prefer, we come to the last whisky that I shared with Igor on this evening before St. Patrick’s day.

So, first things first: I learn I’ve been pronouncing a lot of distilleries incorrectly. It’s Glen Gary, in how it’s said. Also Ledaig is Lecheck, but that’s crazy and only took me 10 minutes to wrap my head around, and has nothing to do with this whisky.

Glen Garioch 1992 Whisky-Doris bottled for Heads & Tails is an interesting combination. First off, Glen Garioch used smoked barley up until 1995. Then they decided to go in a different direction. There’s some discussion that they peaked in making malt in the early 90s. So that’s quite interesting.

Whisky-Doris is a German independent bottler that is best known for their “nose art” line, which sounds cooler in German.

Add to that this was picked out by Heads & Tails, and you have multiple levels of quality control, comes from a period that is hinted at as “the good times”, and is a smoked malt that isn’t from Islay.

All that and a nice label. Let’s see how this tastes?

Price: $314.99 CAD at Kensington Wine Market

Region: Highlands

Vintage: 1992

Bottled: 2014

Age: 22 years old

Cask type: Bourbon Hogshead

Number of bottles: 127

Abv: 51.6%

Colour: 5Y 9/6

Nose: Barnyard, cider being made, lime, wheat, sorghum, violets

This isn’t like a normal peated malt. It’s old apples, barnyard, and sweet fruit / floral notes. It’s odd, to say the least. There’s no salt. There’s smoke, but given time it’s closer to manure.

It’s complex. Do I like it? Hard to say. Given time and water it’s more to my speed, with sorghum and violets, however I’m still confused.

Taste: Lemon, peat, caramelized pear, lemongrass, woody, the love child of birch syrup and maple syrup, white raspberry

It’s sweet, and there’s peat, but it’s again not like peat I’ve had before. It’s more caramelized pears if they were smoked. Or sweet wood, or the right amount of bitter and sweet syrup.

Again, I don’t know if I like it. However I’d be a fool to criticize it, because I can respect the quality. The smoke in hear is going left when I expected it to go up.

Finish: Smoke, salt water, vanilla, rabbit floral honey, oats/digestive biscuits

This is closer to the finish. And a lot of people gave me odd looks at the rabbit note, so I feel I should explain it. I crossed it out because it wasn’t a tasting note, but rather me comparing it to something.

I don’t know if I enjoy rabbit. It’s a sweet, game meat for me. I’ve had it different ways. I know it was quality each time. I still don’t know if I liked it or not.

The finish was that. It’s floral, smoke, and cereal. I still don’t know if I like that.

Conclusion: So how do you solve a problem like Maria? Easy, electroshock therapy. But what about a dram like this one, that you know is a good dram, just not for you?

Well you explain what you don’t like about it. In text, not song, because that’s not helping.

This whisky is a complex, interesting, well made dram. Very few rough notes. The right amount of bitterness and wood mixed with sweet and smoke. Do I like it? I don’t know. muaddibb99 is a huge Glen Garioch fan, I’m ambivalent towards them.

I’ve upped my score here to allow for the complexity. I don’t think this is for me, but it may be for others. And they’ll be happy I’m not fighting them for it. So we all win.


Scotch review #590, Highland review #105, Whisky Network review #983

2 thoughts on “Glen Garioch 1992 Whisky-Doris bottled for Heads & Tails

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