I was tempted to put this SMWS 96.22 “Rocky Road Spice Freakout” in the week where I did several GlenDronach releases (the SMWS Codes list says it’s GlenDronach) but decided to hold it off for a week of SMWS releases instead. This is that week. Hope you’ve been enjoying it.

SMWS 96.22

GlenDronach is known for their heavily sherried releases and are typically associated with Oloroso. Though, increasingly, they’re using PX and this is a single cask of that PX portion of their cask blends. However, that’s not all that’s interesting about this dram, it’s also from one of their peated runs. A truly interesting piece of the overall GlenDronach puzzle I’m looking forward to digging into more in this Scotch whisky review.

SMWS 96.22 “Rocky Road Spice Freakout” Review: Details and Tasting Notes

In SMWS’s Words:

The Panel noted oak polish, leather slippers, old cigar humidors and wood spices at first. Followed swiftly by many herbal qualities such as marjoram, thyme and cough syrup. Then rye bread and blood oranges as well. Reduction brought honeysuckle, gorse, strawberry laces, hessian and charred wood. The palate was equally robust with sawdust, strap leather, biltong and sweet, overripe stone fruits. With water this morphed into brandy snaps, milk chocolate and marshmallows, with rum and raisin, soot and hint of roasted butternut squash. Previously in a bourbon hogshead for 7 years.

Details (price, mash bill, cask type, ABV, etc.)

Region: Speyside, Scotland

Distiller: Glendronach
Mash Bill: 100% Malted Barley
Cask: ex-Bourbon (7 years) & Pedro Ximenez (2 years)
Age: 9 Years
ABV: 59.1%

Cask Strength | Non-Chill Filtered | Natural Color

Price: $105

Tasting Notes

EYE
Dark Amber

NOSE
Plasticy peat, dried apricot, waxy licorice, herbal spice and a layer of oily char.

PALATE
Woody mesquite-like smoke, spice, oily char, roasted malt, cocoa and some herbal notes.

FINISH
Long -> Plasticy woody smoke, charred meat, copper and spice.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Ok balance, medium body and a slick feel.

A single cask of Glendronach that’s just… not… quite… great.

SMWS 96.22 “Rocky Road Spice Freakout” Review: Overall and Score

One minute I love it, the next I hate it, then I go back to loving it and then down to just liking it and then back to hating it. It’s an odd ephemeral whisky that briefly hosts a variety of odd notes that are hard to describe and I’ve never had in any other Whiskey, Whisky, Brandy or Rum. It’s just… odd, and hard to place.

The best way to fully describe the aroma is a grill right before you light it; it’s gritty, sooty, oily charred and metallic, but there’s an odd sweetness, like grilled fruit. The palate continues that oily charred essence. Water just enhances it. SMWS 96.22 “Rocky Road Spice Freakout” is an oddball for sure.

SCORE: 82/100 (B-)

SMWS 96.22

SMWS 96.22 "Rocky Road Spice Freakout" Review 105
  • Nose - 82
  • Palate - 82
  • Finish - 82
  • Balance, Body & Feel - 82
82

SMWS 96.22 "Rocky Road Spice Freakout" Review Summary

SMWS 96.22 “Rocky Road Spice Freakout” a single cask of Glendronach that’s just… not… quite… great.

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