Rating: 13/23 I've not been impressed by IPA finished whiskey before, so I'm either about to have my world turned upside down or be really grateful that I only bought a sample of this. N: Some meat hits me first, unfortunately. This must be quite young. There's some grain and a dash of floral fruitiness here and there. There's a bit of a bitter layer that I think is the hops from the IPA, but it's surprisingly subdued. There's a faint herbal bridge from that into the fruits (cherry, orange, lemon). If it weren't for that overpowering meat, I'd be pretty optimistic right now. P: Fortunately the meat doesn't make it to the palate to the extent that it does the nose. Make no mistake though: I do taste the meaty flavor of a rough, youthful distillate. I get more of the IPA presence here with some bitterness, but the hops are far from overwhelming. There's a nice herbal touch leading into some floral fruit (tangerine, lemon, faint cherry), which in turn leads the palate into some malt, which in turn brings out a bit of toasty grain, light wood, and some vanilla. The malt is a bit too sweet and young, and it does come back around to the meat once or twice. This palate is almost quite good. Shockingly, its undoing is not the IPA, but the distillate. How did you mess this up, Glenfiddich? F: The hops show more here, with some numbing bitterness sticking around for quite a while. It's far from overwhelming though - this is no Corsair hopped expression. The meat also stays around for the finish, unfortunately. There are hints of the herbs and floral fruit, but not a whole lot. This is mostly numbness and meat. Really, a bad finish, though far from gag-inducing. - Conclusion - I was really worried about the hop flavor taking over, but that was entirely the wrong thing to worry about here. The young distillate is a huge problem and the IPA works surprisingly well. I'd try another IPA finished whiskey based on this experience. This is decidedly not a good whiskey though. Dewar's 15 The Monarch (13) is decidedly better than this is, but this also is a lot better than Proper No. Twelve (9). I'd put this closer to the Dewar's than the Proper No. Twelve, even considering the sulfuric meat. That means I must be looking at at least an 11 here. It'll be an 11 or 12. I'm currently leaning toward a 12. Last-second surprise! I came back to the rest of my sample a few days later and the meatiness was largely gone! I don't know if it was the air or just a different palate that did it, but I actually like this decently now. It's no Loch Lomond 12 (16), but it's at least good competition for Dewar's 15. I'd say that a 15 is a real stretch. If this were my only experience, I'd lean toward a 14, but I'm going with a 13 since I had that previous experience that was super meaty. Regardless, this is worth a taste, but the price is far too high to justify a bottle.
63.0 USD per Bottle