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The GlenDronach Aged 50 Years Emerges After 5 Decades Of Slumber

Scotland’s The GlenDronach distillery has a long Scotch whisky making history behind this storied brand, founded back in 1826. It has now debuted its oldest and rarest bottling to date, taking the form of a five decades old expression distilled in 1971.

The new The GlenDronach Aged 50 Years, according to those behind it, has aged all this time in Pedro Ximénez and Oloroso sherry casks from the Spanish bodegas of Jerez in Andalucía. Personally selected by Master Blender Rachel Barrie, these casks have been married for a final maturation in a single Pedro Ximénez cask. Only a small number of casks are chosen to reach this age, and just 198 bottles will be available worldwide.

Each hand-numbered bottle of The GlenDronach Aged 50 Years is presented in a genuine leather case accompanied by an embossed leather booklet detailing the distillery history, tasting notes, and unique craft.

The GlenDronach Aged 50 Years
The GlenDronach Aged 50 Years (image via Brown-Forman)

“The GlenDronach Aged 50 Years is the most prestigious expression of what this timeless, richly-sherried Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky has to offer,” said Barrie in a prepared statement. “At 50 Years Old, it is exceptionally rich and seductive, with mellow layers of alluring complexity. On the nose, ripe dark cherry and plum are the preludes to the harmony of rolling stone fruit, while the palate brings an exquisite overture of flavour with dense undertones of dark chocolate, tobacco, and cocoa.

“It has been a privilege to be the final custodian of our oldest expression to date, passed down through generations. The result is a hand-crafted Highland Single Malt that tells a story of rare dedication, of which The GlenDronach Aged 50 Years is the rarest of them all.”

Bottle No. 1 of The GlenDronach Aged 50 Years was donated to the inaugural Distillers’ One of One Auction in December 2021, raising £40,000 in support of disadvantaged young people in Scotland. As for the rest, they will be available to purchase from selected specialist retailers worldwide from this month for £20,000 GBP (over $27,000 USD). Official tasting notes are below.

  • Appearance: Antique mahogany chestnut
  • Nose: Ripe dark cherry and plum are the preludes to a harmony of rolling stone fruit, gentian, and a plume of smouldering tobacco – lifted by lilting notes of bramble, orange, and cranberry.
  • Palate: Dense undertones of dark chocolate, tobacco, and cocoa form an exquisite overture of flavour. A perfect counter comes in a crescendo of elegant plum and luxurious black cherry, enrobed in a swathe of velvet espresso.
  • ABV: 43.8%

Nino Kilgore-Marchetti

Nino Kilgore-Marchetti is the founder of The Whiskey Wash, an award winning whiskey lifestyle website dedicated to informing and entertaining consumers about whisk(e)y on a global level. As a whisk(e)y journalist, expert and judge he has written about the subject extensively, been interviewed in various media outlets and provided tasting input on many whiskeys at competitions. He also maintains a large private collection of whiskey from which he continually educates his palate on this brown spirit type.

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