Glen Moray Sauternes Cask Matured expression
Philip Day reviews Glen Moray Sauternes Cask Matured expression, providing background information on the distillery, comments from the firm’s Head of Whisky Creation as well as its Brand Ambassador and, finally, his own personal tasting notes.
At last something to lift the gloomy mood as the spirit and stories of Glen Moray’s most famous warehouse are being wrapped up in time to celebrate Christmas in style, with Glen Moray Sauternes Cask Matured expression, the inaugural release from the distillery’s new ‘Warehouse 1 Collection’.
Glen Moray Distillery, in the heart of Speyside, Scotland’s whisky capital and home to several of the most highly-regarded Speyside single malts, announced on 23rd November, this dazzling new cask strength dram packed with festive flavours of dark chocolate, caramel, Seville orange and spice, having been matured exclusively in five sweet Sauternes wine casks in Warehouse 1 for 14 years.
The resulting whisky is a luxurious mix of Glen Moray’s smooth, light Speyside style with the aromatic, honeyed sweetness of France’s most famous dessert wine.
Sauternes Cask Matured will be the first in a new collection of eclectic, small batch releases from Glen Moray, named in honour of Warehouse 1, Elgin distillery’s blue-fronted dunnage warehouse where an adventurous assortment of interesting and innovative casks are tucked away, quietly slumbering while they mature for future release.
Distilled and bottled in 2006, this new expression is exclusive to the UK market and, with just 1248 bottles available, is set to be sought after as a worthy Christmas treat for serious malt whisky lovers.
Glen Moray’s Head of Whisky Creation, Dr Kirstie McCallum commented:
‘We’re very proud to be releasing our Sauternes Cask Matured expression in time for the festive season – and as the first whisky in our new Warehouse 1 Collection. This is an absolute cracker of a dram, and a perfect marriage of Glen Moray’s spirit with all the rich, deliciously sweet flavours you would enjoy in a glass of Sauternes. It’s a real celebration of flavour and Glen Moray’s passion for unusual cask maturation’.
Commenting on the new Warehouse 1 Collection, Glen Moray Brand Ambassador Iain Allan added:
‘There are a good few warehouses at our Elgin site, but Warehouse 1 is special. Over the years, this is where our distillery teams have quietly stored the results of their experiments and cask adventures. As a result we have pockets of casks holding the most interesting and incredible tasting whiskies scattered throughout the warehouse, which we are now uncovering, tasting and making plans to release. It’s fitting and very exciting that, starting with this superb Sauternes bottling, these whiskies will now be enjoyed by drinkers as part of our Warehouse 1 Collection in years to come.’
Sauternes is one of France’s most famous wines, made in the dessert wine producing region just south of Bordeaux and renowned for its intense sweetness and notes of zest and spice.
Glen Moray Sauternes Cask Matured expression (Warehouse 1 Collection)
Tasting Notes (Supplied by Glen Moray):
Colour: Natural colour
Nose: Dark chocolate and espresso with rich toffee and sweet fruit, oak and a gentle touch of spice.
Taste: Sumptuous and complex, syrupy and mouth-coating with hints of dark chocolate, coffee and a touch of salted caramel, balanced with rich oak, vanilla cream, sweet berries, Seville orange and subtle spice.
Finish: Long, lingering, sweet and fruity with a touch of allspice.
ABV: 59.6% non-chill-filtered
Personal tasting notes (Official sample kindly provided by Glen Moray through Burt Greener Communications)
Nose: Robust aromas of rich coffee and dark chocolate, with elements of sticky toffee. Underlying spice and well-seasoned oak notes with hints of natural beeswax wood polish and a sweet citrus freshness.
Taste: After an initial wave of punchy espresso with hints of high quality dark chocolate, reminiscent of an alcohol infused mocha sprinkled with powdered cocoa, it is followed by a particularly mellow, honey-like sweetness from the toffee notes and creamy vanilla, reminding me of Caramac chocolate bars. Aged oak mixed with flavours of other berry fruit and just a hint of bitter orange peel help to generate a well balanced, unctuous mouth-feel.
Finish: A delightful dram with a long enduring fruity sweetness and warming spice notes.
Maturing the whisky in the Sauternes casks has given the spirit time to fully mature, acquiring elements of the wine and instilling it with a unique character, giving the spirit greater depth and character.
In short, the maturation period has created a well-rounded complexly layered classic dram. The mixture of chocolate, coffee and vanilla creaminess together with spiced fruity notes make it very accessible, at a reasonable price point.
This dram should provide a unique experience, as its fresh and deliciously sumptuous nature is certainly well worth acquiring. It is available from all good specialist retailers.
About Glen Moray
Glen Moray is one of Scotland’s best loved single malt whiskies. Located on what was once the Elgin West Brewery site on the banks of the River Lossie. in the heart of Speyside, Scotland’s whisky capital, the Glen Moray distillery has been producing fine single malt since 1897.
Pure waters from the river, locally malted barley, distillation in traditional copper stills and maturation in American ex-bourbon casks combine to give the whisky its smooth, well-balanced, classic Speyside character.
Glen Moray has always been a place where curiosity about flavour and cask maturation has been encouraged. Records dating back to its early days show new make spirit maturing in a wide variety of different casks – considered a highly unusual practice at that time. A passion for experimentation and a deep knowledge of wood have been passed down through generations of Glen Moray distillers.
The result is today’s exceptional and extensive range of whiskies, offering a flavour and style to suit all tastes. Glen Moray is the 5th biggest malt whisky brand by volume in the UK and is growing in international markets.
For most of its working history since 1924 it was owned by Macdonald & Muir (which changed its name to the Glenmorangie Company Ltd. in 1996). In 2004, the French luxury goods group Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy (LVMH) bought Glenmorangie. In 2008, LVMH sold off the Glen Moray distillery to La Martiniquaise. It is currently managed by its Bardinet spirits group subsidiary.
Founded by Jean Cayard in 1934, La Martiniquaise is an independent French spirits group with a large portfolio of international brands. Headquartered near Paris, the group operates in over 100 countries with 38 subsidiaries and production sites. The Group’s four pillars are Scotch whiskies, ports, brandies, wines, rums and craft spirits from France.
For addition information see: http://www.la-martiniquaise.com
Over the years, the Glen Moray Distillery has built an exceptional portfolio of Speyside Single Malts. It currently offers a wide variety of select malts under the following portfolios:
The Elgin Classic Collection:
- Classic Single Malt
- Glen Moray Classic Sherry Cask Finish
- Glen Moray Classic Peated Single Malt Whisky
- Glen Moray Classic Port Cask Finish
- Classic Chardonnay Cask Finish
- Classic Cabernet Cask Finish
The Elgin Heritage Collection:
- Glen Moray 12 year old Single Malt Whisky
- Glen Moray 15 year old Single Malt Whisky
- Glen Moray 18 year old Single Malt Whisky
The Elgin Prestige Collection:
- Glen Moray Mastery
Glen Moray has earned many awards over the years, with the latest being for its Glen Moray 1994 Sherry Cask Finish being awarded ‘Best Scotch Speyside Single Cask Single Malt Category Winner of 21 [years] & over’ in the World Whiskies Awards 2018.
Further information on these expressions as well as details of tours of the distillery are available on the website. (NB as a result of Covid 19 restrictions tours have currently been suspended)
Glen Moray Distillery
Telephone: +44 (0)1343 550 900
Facebook: @GlenMoray Distillery
- Press release care of Burt Greener Communications
- Kindly provided with thanks by Burt Greener Communications