The very first Glen Garioch fully matured in virgin North American white oak casks


OLDMELDRUM, SCOTLAND (November 12, 2013)Glen Garioch®, one of the oldest operating distilleries in Scotland since 1797, makes distinctive, Highland whisky that is loved by a loyal band of followers. Glen Garioch’s most ardent fans would agree that Glen Garioch is as traditional a distillery as they come, not one prone to whisky experimentation or innovations.

Then Glen Garioch Virgin Oak Artisanal Small Batch Release walks through the door. This November, whisky aficionados and Glen Garioch’s merry band of loyalists will taste the robust character that marks the first Glen Garioch expression ever to be matured solely in virgin North American white oak casks. Innovative? Oh yes. Glen Garioch Virgin Oak is offered at 48% ABV and is non-chill filtered. It is set to arrive in the US late November/early December with a 1,038 bottle allocation for a suggested retail price of $109.99.

While American bourbon whiskey must, by law, be matured in unused, virgin oak casks, Scottish distillers have always favored used ‘ex-bourbon’ barrels, believing that the oak in its virgin state would be too overpowering for Scotland’s more refined and delicate whiskies. Intrigued by the prospect of matching Glen Garioch’s rich hearty character with virgin American oak, the distillery laid down a small number of specially created casks. Made from the inner heartwood of 100-year-old oak trees grown in the North American mountains, each barrel has been heavily charred inside to activate the wood’s vanilla and oak spices in readiness for the maturing spirit.

The result is a unique single malt packed with spiciness and vanilla.  Says Rachel Barrie, master blender for Morrison Bowmore Distillers, “Virgin oak matured malts are not for the faint hearted and neither is Glen Garioch.  It’s a malt for real aficionados and this exclusive small batch really makes its mark. Glen Garioch’s intense flavor means it holds up well in a new fill cask, allowing the liquid to be fully matured in virgin oak and not just finished in the barrel. The final result is a fusion of vanilla, caramelized wood sugars and oak spices – a match made in heaven and a stand out for malt enthusiasts.”

Tasting Notes – Glen Garioch Virgin Oak (48% ABV)

A velvet explosion of rich buttery malt, chocolate and spice. Tangy orange and ginger marmalade melds with treacle syrup and rich chocolate cake, leading to a long and warming finish of barley sugar and spice.

The Glen Garioch Distillery

Founded in 1797, Glen Garioch is one of the oldest operating distilleries in Scotland and is the most easterly distillery in the Highlands region. Glen Garioch is distilled to satisfy consumers who enjoy a Highland Single Malt Scotch full of flavor and character. It is an award-winning whisky crafted in uniquely long-armed pot stills from the finest Scottish malted barley. For more than 200 years, Glen Garioch Distillery has been handcrafting a beautiful range of authentic, non chill-filtered single malt whiskies which are then matured in American Bourbon and Spanish Sherry casks.  Glen Garioch was relaunched in 2010 with a core range of two expressions: Glen Garioch 12 Year Old (48% ABV; SRP $60.00) and Founder’s Reserve (48% ABV; SRP $45.00) – both showing the company’s current unpeated style and its distinct house character of honey sweetness, hints of heather and just a touch of spice.


The award-winning Glen Garioch portfolio includes Glen Garioch 12 Year Old and Founder’s Reserve, in addition to special limited-edition bottlings (1978, 1990, 1991, 1994 and 1986 Vintages). Glen Garioch is available across the U.S. and in more than 45 countries worldwide. The Glen Garioch portfolio is imported to the US by Campari America. For more information about Glen Garioch, please visit, and on Twitter @glengarioch1797.