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What an absolute treat, getting to review the super limited edition Glen Grant Collection of whiskies, bottled by Gordon & Macphail, that together clock in three hundred and fifty-three years of whisky maturation. 

Retailing at £9,995 for the set, and with only 75 available, these are sure to be one of the ‘do you remember when’ collections of the future. Why? Because I’ve tasted them and my god they’re amazing.

The collection comprises:

Gordon & MacPhail Glen Grant 1950
Gordon & MacPhail Glen Grant 1951
Gordon & MacPhail Glen Grant 1952
Gordon & MacPhail Glen Grant 1953
Gordon & MacPhail Glen Grant 1954
Gordon & MacPhail Glen Grant 1955

Since the founding of the business, Gordon & MacPhail has sent casks to distilleries throughout Scotland to be filled with new make spirit, before being matured under the custodianship of generations of the Urquhart family. Developing relationships with distilleries across Scotland throughout the company’s history, the whiskies in Gordon & MacPhail’s Glen Grant Collection are uniquely labelled using the original distillery labels.

Stephen Rankin, director and member of the fourth generation of the Urquhart family who own Gordon & MacPhail, said:

“By creating this collection, we have captured a unique piece of Scotland’s liquid history, bringing together a combined 353 years of knowledge, expertise, and whisky maturation. With six whiskies aged between 57 and 61 years old, this collection is a testament to the company’s ability to nurture aged expressions.”

So what did I think of the Glen Grant Collection when I sampled it? Read on dear GreatDrammer.

 

Glen Grant 1950 (57 years old), hogshead #853 & Sherry butt #2734 – 40%

What a starter dram! Full-bodied with a wonderful spicy character on the nose, loads of juicy red berries and a gorgeous wine note underpinned with a wisp of an old school smoky note. The palate was quite oily, rich, thick and brings more wood notes to work alongside the spicy fruity notes of apples, cinnamon and white pepper. Delightful. The smoky note from the nose develops and a sort of bonfire ash note comes alive for a pretty solid, medium finish.

Glen Grant 1951 (61 years old), refill Sherry butt #2760 & first fill Sherry butt #3202 – 40%

Oh hello. Phwoar this whisky is the absolute pinnacle of sherry matured whisky; a sherry bomb that is well balanced, intriguing and not overpowering. Fantastic. The nose and palate are both packed full of sweet fruity notes with a toasted oak note intermingled with soft spices too. My word this was superb.

Glen Grant 1952 (59 years old), first fill Sherry butt #378; first fill Sherry hogshead #1133; first fill American hogshead #1471 & refill Sherry hogshead #3245 – 40%

Very light, this one is more vibrant and fresh than its Glen Grant Collection peers, giving off a lot of exotic fruits mixed with the refined nutty, herbal and spicy nature you’d expect of sherry cask matured whisky. Maybe this one out of all of them is a little weak in terms of depth and viscosity, but that’s only because all of the others are so rich, so thick and so full of flavour, this was a nice juxtaposition to its counterparts with vanilla and spiciness largely unexpected.

Glen Grant 1953 (60 year old), refill Sherry butt #598-599 & refill Sherry hogshead #1105 – 40%

And we’re back, this one has a fantastically fruity, juicy, tropical nose with a refined note of marmalade, maybe a bit nutty in places and a lovely banana note carrying through. Simply divine. One to sit, savour, ponder and celebrate with. The body is solid again, with that fruity character coming through by the bucketload with those ancient smoky wisps again, like the embers of a bonfire. Lots of yes.

Glen Grant 1954 (59 years old), first fill Sherry butt #1822 – 40%

Ah these are all so good, and this one take it up a gear again bringing in unexpected red summer fruits like strawberries and raspberries, all underpinned by that old, succulent character you’d expect from an ancient first fill sherry cask matured whisky. Notes of coffee, bitter dark chocolate, a cooling, minty note and a smooth, spicy finish. Outstanding.

Glen Grant 1955 (57 years old), first fill Sherry butt #833 – 40%

And the bells are ringing out, for Christmas Day. This dram is bringing back memories of Christmas spices such as cinnamon, white pepper, cloves along with deep, dark fruits including plums, cherries, raisins and a light tobacco wrap. Magical almost. The body is solid, with classic sherry notes that have developed into something quite special, with a little hint of marmalade and the longest finish of the Glen Grant Collection. Thoroughly enjoyable.

What’s fantastic about the Glen Grant Collection is that despite all being bottled at 40%, there are such wonderful flavour characteristics to each whisky here that you would sometimes think they are of a higher ABV. Each one is special in its own way and really captures a unique period of distilling, but moreover they capture the quest for perfection and unwavering dedication that Gordon & Macphail put into each and every one of their bottlings; both the company, and their wood programme is truly at the pinnacle of the whisky industry.

Now to see if my wife wants to up our Christmas present budget a little…

Thank you to Gordon & Macphail for sending me the samples, I am truly honoured to have tried such whisky wizardry.

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