Glenkinchie 12 year old was introduced in 2007 replacing the previous 10 year old version, but still bottled at the same strength of 43% ABV.
Nose: Herbal, grassy and quite light. Freshly cut grasses, florals, hay and lemon oils, are joined by some sharp metallic aromas – very akin to copper coins. Grape juice and green apples provide some fruitiness along with light honey and gentle toffee, but it’s hard to get around the distinctively young aromas of copper contact that are quite dominant here.
Taste: Light and malty, but quite simplistic too. A quick arrival delivers biscuity flavours, citrus and grasses along with gentle orchard fruits (primarily apples). This then heads into steeped tea territory, becoming increasingly drying with a touch of astringency along for the ride. After a period of resting, underlying earthy notes develop. Spiciness is certainly present and quite interesting – clove, cardamom and sprinkle of black pepper. But, I still get that unrefined raw and coppery taste, even with a few drops of water.
Finish: Short, quite drying and slightly bitter with oak and pepper.
Glenkinchie 12 year old is a perfectly acceptable whisky, but I’d not go anything further than that. You can certainly taste the underlying spirit character, but, whilst garden-fresh in places, I find it to be quite raw and unrefined in others. Despite two years more ageing than its 10 year old predecessor, it manages to taste a fair bit younger – this might be due to changes in production and/or recipes, but, I suspect it’s more likely down to poorer cask quality (I.E the use of tired casks 3rd and 4th fill casks which offer less activity and therefore less maturation). Still relatively well-priced, but a far cry from the 10 year old it replaced.
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