Gordon & MacPhail Showcases New 70 Year Old Glen Grant Whisky - The Whiskey Wash

Gordon & MacPhail Showcases New 70 Year Old Glen Grant Whisky

By Nino Marchetti / February 8, 2019

The Scottish whisky independent bottler that is Gordon & MacPhail, as we’ve pointed out in recent times, is capable of pulling forth from their aging stocks some incredibly old Scotches for bottling. One of the more recent of these was a 1968 expression from the Caol Ila distillery, and now an even older whisky has emerged from long aged Glen Grant spirit.

The new Gordon & MacPhail 1948 from Glen Grant Distillery, according to those behind it, is the latest from this bottler’s Private Collection series, which highlights some of their most exclusive offerings. For this particular one what you’ve got here is a 70 year old Scotch whisky drawn from Cask 2154. The history of this barrel is that it is a first fill sherry butt put down to slumber in June, 1948. It is said that “members of four generations of the Urquhart family [the owners of Gordon & MacPhail] nurtured Cask 2154.

“John Urquhart selected the cask with his son, George, back in 1948. George oversaw storage of the cask in the fabled Warehouse No. 5 at Glen Grant Distillery. His eldest son, Ian, monitored the whisky and, in May 1968, arranged for the Sherry butt to be moved to Gordon & MacPhail’s Elgin warehouse. Ian’s nephew, Stuart, the company’s Operations Director, selected Cask 2154 for bottling on Oct. 19 2018. ”

Gordon & MacPhail 1948 from Glen Grant Distillery

Gordon & MacPhail 1948 from Glen Grant Distillery (image via Gordon & MacPhail)

Only 210 hand-blown crystal decanters of this very old whisky are being made available globally, each bottled at 48% ABV and presented in a wooden presentation case with doors that open to reveal what’s inside.

“Our family has matured single malt whiskies for 123 years, each generation passing on its knowledge of how to combine spirit and oak to create exquisite whiskies,” said Stephen Rankin, Gordon & MacPhail’s director of prestige and member of the fourth generation of the Urquhart family, in a prepared statement. “Four generations of my family have carefully nurtured Cask 2154 over its 70 years to produce this unique whisky.

“My great-grandfather, John, selected the first fill Sherry butt in 1948 to fill with new-make spirit from Glen Grant. My family has patiently watched over this cask, regularly monitoring and sampling the whisky, recognising the right moment to bottle it at its ultimate peak. This masterpiece epitomises the skill and craft involved in matching a cask to new-make spirit, as well as our dedication to creating unique and intriguing whiskies.

“Thanks to the notable influence of the Sherry butt on the spirit over the years, the elegant whisky displays flavours of dried fruit, orange zest, and cracked black pepper whilst maintaining a long, smooth charred oak finish. The remarkable 70-year-old malt also has delicate smoky notes, a reminder that, in 1948, the distillery would have been using traditional practices on their floor maltings and local peat as a fuel.”

Should you seek out the Gordon & MacPhail 1948 from Glen Grant Distillery expect to drop £17,500, or around $22,700 USD.