Home Distilleries Review: Glenlivet 13 Year Sherry Cask

Review: Glenlivet 13 Year Sherry Cask

by Chris Perugini

Here’s an understatement: whisky is very much a global phenomenon these days. Be that as it may, certain areas of the world seem to get way more attention than others. Despite being a relatively small country, Taiwan has an extremely active whisky consumer market. From their own producers like Kavalan to imports of Scotch and other world whiskies, Taiwan is on every whisky maker’s map. There’s an entire treasure trove of releases that most of us will never even hear about because they’re produced for Taiwan only.

When I saw that there was a well-aged, fully sherry cask-matured Glenlivet exclusive to Taiwan, I was highly intrigued. Once I saw that a cask strength version followed soon after, I knew I had to get my hands on one. I can’t get enough heavily sherried Glenlivet and was really excited about full maturation in ex-Oloroso casks without the shortcut of PX cask influence.

This whisky was matured in sherry casks for at least 13 years before being bottled at 58.7% ABV. My bottle is long gone now but has sentimental value to me as it was the showstopper at my very last in-person whisky tasting before social gatherings came to a grinding halt in 2020.

Why do I always speak so highly of heavily sherried Glenlivet? Read on and I think you’ll understand.

Glenlivet 13 Year Sherry Cask (Cask Strength) - 58.7% ABV
Category Notes
Appearance Old Oak
Nose Rum raisin cake, toasted almond, Luxardo cherry syrup, a rather forward oak note for the age, clove, a touch of soy sauce, old leather, hot chocolate powder, prunes, hint of honey
Taste Thick and oily, stewed apples and pears, cherry danish, toffee, hefty cinnamon, dried berries, Toaster Strudel icing, damson jam, vanilla, prunes, burnt sugar.
Finish Oak and baking spice first, allspice, way less heat than expected, walnuts and hazelnuts, pinot noir. That winey, spice-driven profile is mouth watering and continues for a long while.
Overall Thoughts At the risk of repeating myself for the 500th time, I need to say it again. Heavily sherried Glenlivet is an astoundingly tasty and oft overlooked combination in the world of single malt whisky. The Glenlivet fruit-based house style get turned up to another level with the addition of Oloroso sherry cask influence. I love that PX casks weren’t used for this release as I think it would have added an overwhelming element of sweetness. This is a luscious single malt that is the perfect way to end an evening with friends.

Taiwan always gets all the good stuff.
Total Score 95/100

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2 comments

James April 30, 2021 - 11:43 am

95 is a huge score and not one I was expecting to see from a Glenlivet! Is it really that good?! I’m incredibly intrigued and tempted to buy one. Is it worth the £180 it would cost me?…

Reply
Chris Perugini April 30, 2021 - 2:01 pm

I tried this whisky multiple times before settling on this final score. There are a few important factors that went into this expression being so highly rated. The first is that this special edition Glenlivet was matured entirely in sherry casks. I find this style of maturation really beneficial for Glenlivet distillate and the standard range only uses small proportions of sherry casks. The second and more important factor is that this was bottled at full cask strength. That full-flavored, uncut, and unfiltered result does absolute wonders. This is far removed from the Glenlivets you find normally shelves but it really showcases what a great whisky it can be. Thanks for commenting!

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