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Unveiled in mid-2015, GlenDronach's The Hielan' is a rather handsome entry level 8 year old single malt from the Highland distillery's range, matured and married in bourbon and Sherry casks. Delightfully buttery with a good helping of chewy raisin and almond notes at its core, joined by touches of citrus and spice.
Nose: Honey'd malt, vanilla fudge and citrus peels. Slightly chocolate-y raisin notes and a little cinnamon.
Palate: More spice comes through on the palate, but the vanilla-rich buttery elements remain up front. Freshly baked biscuits topped with almonds and plump sultanas.
Finish: Quite long, with Sherried fruit and ginger lasting.
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I have been having a moan over the past few years about the proliferation of NAS malt whiskies, some of which are fine while others just shouldn't have been released. So, I was pleased to see Glendronach, one of my favourite distillers, being brave enough to release a stated 8 year old, especially at 46% and non-chillfiltered. That said, though, I can't say that I enjoyed this dram, especially at over £36. I had some friends round and we were trying various malts (all around this price point) and this was the one that got slated for being really rough and really not ready for drinking. Personally, I wouldn't go so far as that but nowhere near as good as the 12yo at only £2 more. As with all things whisky, these are only opinions!
6th April 2017
Really great. smooth, sweet, well balanced... what more could you ask for?
22nd January 2017
super for the price
6th January 2017
Wonderfull nose, warm mouthfilling taste. I taste hints of cacao, slices, nuts (almond?) and sweet stuff. I like the different batches of flavours coming in every sip. And with rhe quiet long finish the journey is complete. I would have guessed an older whisky in a blind taste too. Value for money, I run in to this bottle coincidentely, but it in my collectioneur permently now.
19th March 2016
Rich and velvety smooth, with more raisins than Mary Berry's pantry. 8 years is practically ancient in todays whisky terms, but had I tasted blind (and not noticing the lighter hue) I would have judged this to be older. And for just over £30? Buy it! Lovely long finish too. Not sure where the bourbon cask influence is, but thats no bad thing in my eyes.
15th December 2015