This Glen Elgin 16 year old was bottled several years ago as part of the Diageo Special Releases 2008. It only cost about €60 at the time, but I thought it was pretty expensive! Ha, little did I know then.

Yup, times have changed. And in this case, that does not only apply to the prices. The entire Diageo Special Releases series has also undergone a true metamorphosis. The labels are completely different; they were still relatively simple in 2008, but they feature mythical animals in bright colours nowadays. And it used to be mainly unique and older bottles (this Glen Elgin was one of the youngest in 2008); now, it is primarily about unusual casks, and a 16-year-old is one of the oldest in the series.

However, those old, unique bottles that were once part of the Special Releases are still being released. But these have now been accommodated in the relatively new Prima & Ultima series. With all those changes over the years, I think we can safely assume that the Special Releases have become an entirely new series.

Anyway, I digress. Because, of course, we are here for this Glen Elgin 16 year old, one from the old Special Releases series and so no unusual casks or mythical animals, but a normal single malt with a simple label. Which back then was just special because there weren’t many Glen Elgins was released, not even by independent bottlers.

This Glen Elgin has matured in European oak casks and is bottled at 58.5% ABV.

Glen Elgin 16 year old tasting notes:

Nose: dried fruits, such as raisins and prunes. Oranges. A touch leather, and it’s slightly oaky. Then walnuts, quickly followed by dark chocolate. A nice drop of rich honey. Later also dark fruits, blueberries, and dark cherries.

Taste: quite some oranges and honey. Followed by prunes and blueberries. Raisins and dark chocolate. It’s slightly oaky. A hint of black pepper, cloves and cinnamon.

Finish: mid-long to long. Orange liqueur and blueberries. A touch of oak. Black pepper, Cinnamon too.

It’s just an excellent single malt. Maybe not overly complex, but very rich and flavourful. I actually can’t believe this one stayed on the shelves for so long!