Glen Garioch’s first small batch from the distillery re-opening in 1997

Glen Garioch, Scotland’s most easterly distillery, will launch a new limited edition, the Glen Garioch Vintage 1997, this summer. The vintage 1997, has particular provenance as it is the first whisky produced at the Oldmeldrum distillery following its re-opening after nearly two years closure and worries for the future of the distillery at the time.

In 1997 the re-firing of the stills and the first product was warmly greeted locally as owners Morrison-Bowmore (part of Suntory) took the brave decision of confidence in the town centre distillery.

The new small batch release will be available at the distillery but also  marks the start of duty free retail push which will see Glen Garioch aim to strengthen its position this year. Matured in a combination of first and second fill bourbon barrels, it has the fresh fruit tastes and soft creamy textures characteristic of Glen Garioch’s distinctive house style.

A spokesperson said: “The distillery may have been mothballed for two years but this vintage has borne fruit, in every sense. It sets the precedent for the quality of spirit achieved at Glen Garioch Distillery since its reopening. And with just an initial 1,000 cases available globally, we can think of no better route to market this fine vintage than through the discerning travel retail audience.”

The 1997 vintage is said to be “balanced on the nose, with an initial vanilla and nougat sweetness quickly followed by cinnamon and ginger spices before being embellished by a cornucopia of complex fruits.”

Rachel Barrie, the blender at Morrison Bowmore, said: “Spices and a sweet and juicy pear finish conclude a fruit laden mouth-watering taste complete with Glen Garioch’s trademark creamy texture. It’s one of the creamiest Glen Gariochs, while still very fruity – apple and pear crumble swimming in carnation milk. “

With its proud Doric history, the Aberdeenshire malt captures the enduring and couthie spirit of the Highland town of Oldmeldrum.

At 56.7% ABV, Glen Garioch 1997 is available from the distillery and selected duty free outlets, retailing circa £49.99.