The release of one of the most delicious whiskies ever created by Glenmorangie will launch the Scottish Highland Distillery’s vintage collection, Bond House No 1. This exclusive collection of limited releases explores the unique origins of Glenmorangie’s most prestigious parcels of aged whisky, each distilled in a single year. The inaugural expression, Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1990, tells its own extraordinary story of a sublime spirit which emerged, against all odds, from the most challenging harvest in living memory.
Created with the collector in mind, Glenmorangie’s Bond House No 1 series showcases the individuality of the Distillery’s most complex and elegant vintage malts. Fittingly, the collection takes its name from the largest of Glenmorangie’s 19th century Bonded Warehouses. For generations, Warehouse No 1 was home to the Distillery’s casks of maturing spirit. But in 1990, as Glenmorangie sought to meet aficionados’ growing desire for its finest single malt, its role was to change entirely. Bonded Warehouse No 1 was transformed into a majestic new still house, home to Glenmorangie’s signature copper stills, renowned as the tallest in Scotland. Their stature ensures the vapours travel the long distance to the top, for a smoother, more elegant spirit. Today, Bonded Warehouse No 1 is the heart of the Distillery’s whisky creation – revered as Glenmorangie’s Highland cathedral.
Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1990 marks this year of change at the Distillery, also memorable for another reason. The barley harvest from the previous summer proved problematic for whisky makers in 1990. It was hard to process through Scotland’s distilleries and only through mastery and great craftsmanship, was Glenmorangie able to create even a small parcel of new-make spirit. Against the odds – and to the delight of its creators – this spirit proved sublime. Sensing its potential, the Distillery nurtured the spirit’s rare delicacy for 25 years in carefully selected ex-bourbon casks, with a small parcel in ex-sherry casks. The resulting creation, Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1990, is a whisky defined by its elegance, and overflowing with floral and fruity aromas.
Dr Bill Lumsden, Glenmorangie’s Director of Distilling, Whisky Creation & Whisky Stocks, said: “The Bond House No 1 collection gives connoisseurs a unique opportunity to explore the individuality each year has lent our award-winning spirit. I’m delighted that Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1990 will launch the collection. Even today, few can explain how a spirit so delicious could emerge from a barley crop of such challenges. Combined with a quarter-century of Glenmorangie’s exceptional cask expertise, its finesse and vibrancy has been preserved through the ages, to create a whisky brimming with aromas of heather honey, mandarin and candied fruits and tastes of orange syrup and vanilla, zesty, herbal top notes, baked apples and brown sugar.”
Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1990 is chill filtered and bottled at 43% ABV.
Colour: Deep gold
Nose: The aroma is a veritable cornucopia of heady floral and fruity notes; heather honey, honeysuckle and freesia mingle with orange blossom, candied fruits, mandarin, pear and apple. This complex bouquet is supplemented by a pungent, distinctive note of beeswax.
Taste: The mouthfeel is silky, creamy and mouth coating, delightfully mellow and gentle. This leads into succulent, sweet flavours of orange syrup, puff candy, honeycomb, vanilla, and some zesty, herbal top notes of gooseberry and menthol.
Finish: The fruitiness continues with baked apples and pears, then there are some deeper notes of brown sugar, malty/biscuit flavours and the gentlest hint of clove and oak tannin on the finish.