Tasting: Glencadam 15y

Glencadam 15Dram data:
Distillery: Glencadam
Bottler: Original Bottling
Distilled: –
Bottled: 09.08.2011
Age: 15
Limitation: –
Casks: –
Alcohol: 46%
Unchillfiltered, natural colour
Whiskybase link

Tasting notes:
The nose is a classic, mellow, highland-style ex-bourbon cask nose. Vanilla pudding with a slice of lemon on top. A slightly sweet perfume note, kiwi, pineapple, mango, apricot, coconut, honey, cream, a bit of chalk. A rather light and fragrant nose, no woody or dark notes at all. The palate tastes quite a bit younger than 15 years, it is still very fresh and young, I expect lots of refill bourbon casks in the mix and not too many fresh ones. Quite a lot of alcohol, vanilla, more sweet perfume but without the tropical fruits. A bit of honey and a slightly bitter, grassy, salty and dry element as well. A drop of water tames the alcohol and brings out more notes of vanilla and apple. The finish is equally light and medium long. At first there’s a nice sweetness which quickly dries down to reveal notes of chalk, oak and malt.

All in all an honest, easy-sipping, light and fragrant malt. Not too engaging or demanding, no fancy casks – just plain, mostly refill ex-bourbon ones. I like the fact this whisky from the independently owned Glencadam distillery it is uncoloured and not chill filtered and bottled at 46% – just the way we want to see out whiskies.
One thing I noticed while looking at the Glencadam range is their 12- and 14- year old whiskies in their standard range being finished in Port and Sherry respectively. Glencadam was mothballed in 2000 and bought by the current owners, Angus Dundee, in 2003. What we’ve got here in the bottle is all old stock, distilled by the previous owners and tasting this whisky I can’t help but to speculate there might not be that many really engaging, first-fill casks in the warehouse which would be necessary to beef up this bottling from a good malt to a great one. This theory is supported by the fact that the 12- and 14-year-olds are all “finished” to give them additional depth.
It’ll be interesting to see in the years to come how the style of Glencadam will change when we will see distillate from the current, independent owners, being used. Definitely a distillery off the beaten path to watch and try.

Score: 80/100
(Nose: 83 Palate: 78 Finish: 78)

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