I like whisky. When my father in-law still drank, it was a pleasure to bust out something fun from the cabinet and enjoy a dram or two on any day of the week. Of course, he developed a taste for the expensive or rare stuff quicker than I would have expected, and we eventually started saving the really good stuff for the more special days – such as those we might have the time or inclination to enjoy two or three drams.  

I’ve always been a fan of Glenmorangie. I still have a bottle of the old port cask, possibly one of the last bottles in existence of the Madeira cask, which resides in a “never to be opened” position in the back of the cabinet. I was pretty pleased with the range expansion of the Glenmorangie line with the La Santa, Quinta Rubin, and when budget allows, the Signet has been known to grace my gullet.

What recently came my way was the very new Glenmorangie Tùsail in the Private Edition line. This is a single variety single-malt scotch. Wine drinkers will be familiar with the term denoting a wine made from a single grape such as merlot, versus a blend such as a Bordeaux red or meritage. This bottling utilizes the Maris Otter winter barley variety and is a tough variety to source for whisky since it is a cornerstone of several fine English beers. It’s not a high-yielding variety, so this is more a labour of love rather than a “let’s get rich” proposition.

So, let’s taste this. It’s quite pale, a muted, yellow gold in the glass with a deep and engaging aroma; it’s also quite biscuit, dominated with citrus and a little dried apple peel and a smattering of peanut brittle. Flavour-wise it’s silky and rich with bright flavours and a clean barley note (I was given a little jar of the Maris Otter barley, which I ate some of) and slightly smoky too, the finer spice notes adding a nice level of depth. I prefer my scotch with a little water, and adding some water elevated the barley characters and a little bit of fruit.

My father in law doesn’t drink very often anymore, but I think he’d like this. Too bad I agreed to pass the bottle back….

About $110 at Alberta Liquor Stores in limited quantities +774964

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