Ever wonder why there’s a deer on the whisky’s label? Well, the word Glenfiddich is Gaelic for “valley of the deer.” The Glenfiddich 12-year-old especially is a classic to many and a reliable whisky to pour without too much effort being one of the best-selling single malts worldwide.
Glenfiddich is one of the few single malt whiskey distilleries to remain entirely family owned and a true reflection of our founder’s innovative nature, passed down through the generations.
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What Is Glenfiddich Whisky Made from?
Glenfiddich follows the “old-fashioned” style of whisky-making. Whole grain barley is harvested and soaked in water for a couple of days to commence the germination process. They are then dried over air to halt the process to create malt. Glenfiddich also does not use peat to dry their malt.
The malted barley is grounded to form grist. This is then mixed with water to create mash. The mash is turned the starches in the barley to convert to sugar creating a syrupy mush called “wort.” The wort is then cooled and transferred into “washback’s,” giant vats for fermenting. Yeast is added. The yeast ferments the barley sugars and raises the temperature as the alcohol content increases! When it cools, a brown “wash” liquid has been created. The wash liquid is then filtered into copper stills for distillation. Each still is heated to separate out the levels of whisky since alcohol and water boil at different temperatures. Differently shaped stills are used for wash and spirit distillation. This preserves the unique flavor of their whisky.
An in-house still man cuts the whisky by hand and cooperages tend to the casks on site. Any distillate not deemed pure enough, called “feints” is redistilled while the heart of the whisky is transferred to mellowed oak casks which have been charred to caramelize the wood sugars and allow those flavors to enter the whisky more easily. The whisky matures for a minimum of 3 years. After maturation, the Malt Master tastes and selects only certain barrels which are ready to be enjoyed!
What Does Glenfiddich Whisky Taste Like
Once opened, one is hit with an intriguing complex aroma of sweet honey and vanilla combined with dark fruits. On the palate, it has a silky and smooth feel and is full-bodied with a burst of flavor. The finish is satisfyingly rich with lingering sweetness.
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Glenfiddich has a vast portfolio with 10 different expressions of varying ages and finishes. Let’s focus on the main types of Glenfiddich.
This drink has an old gold appearance with strong notes of a mix of slightly floral, mineral citrus taste which develops into notes of caramel. In the mouth it’s soft and light with floral and spiciness to it. It finished with a sweet fruity and oily taste.
Glenfiddich 15 Year Old is created using a process unique amongst Scotch whisky distillers - the Glenfiddich Solera Vat System. This 15 year old malt is matured to perfection in a unique solera vat, a large oak tun which is always half full. It’s a mix of three different types of oak cask: sherry, traditional bourbon and new oak. This ensures a consistent, finely balanced single malt. The process is completed by a settling period (marrying) in smaller Solera Tuns. This process creates a smooth full-bodied drink with a rich and lingering sweet finish to it.
A rare single malt created for the connoisseur, the whisky has a complex character and sublime mellowness come from the long years of maturation in the finest Oloroso sherry casks and traditional bourbon casks. Resulting in a touch of sweetness from the sherry wood is perfectly balanced by the oakiness drawn from the traditional casks to deliver a single malt Scotch whisky of brilliant character – smooth and full-bodied with a warming and rewarding finish to it.
This Single Malt Scotch Whisky completed its maturation in casks that previously held aged Caribbean rum. Resulting with a drink with hints of banana and oak with a peppery taste to it.
How to Drink Glenfiddich Whisky
Scotch is one of those drinks that doesn’t need food to shine. Especially when it’s something as flavorful as a single malt. Glenfiddich is perfectly enjoyed when straight or on the rocks. And if you are not a fan of such strong tastes, one can add a bit of water or club soda.
With nearly two centuries worth of whisky making experience, Glenfiddich is a quintessential drink for every home. This is truly a keeper in the top scotch brands category!
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