Billy Walker purchased The Glenallachie back in 2017, and in 2018 the new line up was released to the market and I reviewed it back then with the 12 Year Old coming on top but just barely ahead of the 1st edition of the 10 Year Old Cask Strength.
My complaint back then was that the minerality is a tad too dominant, and it seems like there was more feedback like that as the formula was tweaked with more sherry casks and more active casks to further balance the minerality. In addition, the color of the next editions got darker and darker, maybe not only to balance the taste but to also appeal to dark-color whisky buyers – you know, the darker the more sherried it is and more people buying it.
Anyway, along the road, Glenallachie 10 Cask Strength went from strength to strength (and from color to darker color), leading to this Batch 5 which started a new casks formula for the whisky: PX, Oloroso, Virgin Oak, and Rioja Casks. This formula seems to be a real winner as it was repeated for Batch 6 & 7 (which is the latest released to the market). Shall we check it out?
Glenallachie 10 Year Old Cask Strength Batch 5 (55.9%)
Nose: A fruity bomb, layer of stone fruits with ripe peaches and apricots and on top of that another sherry/wine fruitiness with dried berries, fresh raspberries and strawberries and cranberries juice. Here comes the minerality but it’s less pronounced than the 1st edition, cinnamon, oak spices, caramel, milk chocolate and dark chocolate, medium roasted beans espresso, sweet oak, cinnamon paste, very fresh and lively.
Palate: Nuts paste, cinnamon, dried fruit with mostly red berries, dark chocolate, mocha, caramel, toffee, again less minerality comparing to 1st edition, relentless undercurrent of chocolate, espresso and coffee flavored chocolate, pepper and spices, not as fruity as the nose.
Finish: Medium length, minerality, dark chocolate, dried red fruits peels, coffee bitterness, caramel and sweet oak spice.
Thoughts: I liked it. It’s very tasty with a good balance between the different cask types and the minerally strong distillate. There’s sweetness but it’s not overpowering, there’s spiciness and chocolate. Very easy drinker despite the ABV and again, very tasty. No wonder they keep going on with this formula and increasing the batch size with each release.