Glenburgie 21 1998 Single Malts of Scotland

This is the continuing series I’m calling “When you drink Apple Pie “When the drink hits your eye Like a big apple pie, that’s Glenburgie”. Does that make sense? No, not at all. Should I have said it in the first one? Not at all, it’s not funny. Am I leaving it in here because it’s dorky? You bet your sweet ass.

Have we had luck yet with finding an ex-Bourbon Glenburgie that I can safely talk about without saying “apple pie” over and over? Kinda? Look, this is probably going to continue as time goes on, but it’s interesting to have some whiskies along the way and make friends. At least that’s what I call the “delusions” that my “court ordered therapist” says is part of “my anxiety at the world falling apart”. Whatever, nerd.

So what do we have today? Glenburgie 21 1998 Single Malts of Scotland is a newer 21-year-old Glenburgie aged in a single ex-Bourbon hogshead. It’s one of two Single Malts of Scotland (independent bottler that’s part of Elixir Distillers) Glenburgies that we’ll be talking about, but let’s not get ahead of ourselves.

Oh, and it’s cask strength, so no watering down this time. Let’s see, shall we?

Price: $188

Region: Speyside

Vintage: October 8, 1998

Bottled: November 1, 2019

Cask type: Hogshead

Cask number: 900896

Number of bottles: 251

Abv: 55.2%

Colour: 5Y 9/6

Nose: Spiced pear, butter, vanilla, grass

Nice hit of pear and spice, butter, vanilla… Okay, it’s a pear galette, alright? I’ll admit there’s going to be more ex-Bourbon Glenburgie to be reviewed.

However there’s a grassy note that’s differentiating it at least.. Quite light nose though. You’re going to end up with circles on your face with this one.

Taste: Cardamon, pear, cumin, nutmeg, salt

Spice, pear, more spice, earth spice, some citrus spice, some Xmas spice (but only a little bit), and salt.

Yeah, that’s a spice bomb. At least the pear here is strong enough versus the last one, that tasted like an October supplies shipment to Starbucks, truck and all. Salt helps too.

Finish: Butter, ginger, cloves, pear, lemon juice

Fatty, spice, more pear… We’re back to the galette, okay, and we added a bit more spice and maybe used some extra large pears or pears we shouldn’t have used in baking.

Yeah, my other hobby is baking, why do you ask? I could be comparing this to beholders or Vecna, if you’d prefer? Wait, no, I have no idea how to compare this to DnD at all. Tastes like a potion of cure moderate wounds? No, no, that makes no sense.

Conclusion: Spice bomb with a nice amount of acidity and pear to balance it out, aka a pear galette, aka a pear pie, aka this doesn’t totally answer my thesis. Which is too bad for my theory, but what about the whisky?

It’s a rough single cask that figures itself out but has some rough edges. There’s a lot of spices going on here. It’s very sweet. That can be par for the course with single casks. Also this was specifically for the US Market, and let’s be honest with ourselves: Americans have very sweet diets, so your typical “bunch of fruit” isn’t going to seem as sweet to that market versus parts of Europe.

So it makes sense for the market. I don’t know if I’d pour it for someone outside of the US market. I don’t know if I would pour it for someone who doesn’t love Autumnal flavours. And I think other Glenburgie whiskies balance these flavours better. But if you do have this and enjoy it’s wackiness and rough edges, great. Give yourself a dram and a gold star and maybe a wank in private, you deserve it.


Scotch review #1606, Speyside review #458, Whisky Network review #2333

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