Whisky Focus - The Girvan Patent Still Single Grain 25 Year Old

The Girvan Patent Still Single Grain 25 Year Old


13th December 2013
William Grant break away from whisky conventions and release The Girvan Patent Still 25 Year Old Scotch Single Grain Whisky.

Whisky drinkers have often considered grain whisky to be nothing more than a neutral spirit that is used to mix with malt whisky to create the blended whiskies we know and love. In a way this is correct, young grain whisky hasn't got much character this is obtained by spending time in the cask but it is ideal for taming some of the harsher bolder flavours which can be found in young malt whisky that may not be palatable to the wider audience and both blended together make some very palatable blended whiskies.

In recent years though there has been a huge increase in the popularity of single malt whisky which has lead many whisky connoisseurs to experiment with other types of whiskies. As none of the Scotch grain whisky distilleries bottled their own single grain whisky, whisky drinkers have had to seek out the limited amount of single grain whisky bottlings available from independent bottlers such as Compass Box or Douglas Laing's Clan Denny, that is until now!

William Grant & Sons who back in 1963 constructed the massive Girvan grain distillery in Ayrshire which looks out into Ailsa Bay (the bay not the distillery which is also nearby) and the picturesque extinct volcano island of Ailsa Craig have announced the release of The Girvan Patent Still 25 year old, which is the first of three new whiskies which will form an ongoing core range of single grain whisky from the Girvan distillery.

The Girvan grain distillery took only 9 months to construct and the distillery went into production on Christmas Day 1963 which does seem to be a bit of a tradition with William Grant distillery's as the Glenfiddich distillery also went into production on Christmas day back in 1887.

Even though the distillery has an enormous output of just over 100 million litres of grain spirit per year and fill up to 3,000 casks per day, distillery bottlings of Girvan single grain whisky have been rarer than hens teeth but William Grant have now changed that with the release of The Girvan Patent Still 25 year old.

The Girvan Patent Still 25 year old was bottled at 42% ABV and carries a price tag of 250 is available now exclusively in the UK and will be followed in 2014 by The Girvan Patent Still 30 year old, 42% ABV with an estimated RRP of 375. It will also be joined by a Girvan Patent Still No Age Statement also bottled at 42% ABV with an estimated RRP of 75.

They all carry big price tags and could be a hard sell for William Grant as there are a few independent bottlings out there around the same age for less money and I am intrigued by the No Age Statement Girvan which will be released next year as in my experience much of the character in a good single grain whisky has been obtained during the many years it has spent maturing in the cask. As always I will approach the NAS with an open mind but I will need to wait until next year with that one but meanwhile you can read what I thought of the now available Girvan Patent Still 25 year old below.

Oh, and here is a fantastic picture of a view of the volcanic island Ailsa Craig taken from Girvan, with the Isle of Arran and Northern Ireland visible in the background, it is nothing really to do with the whisky other than you can see it from the distillery but I couldn't resist posting this as I fly over Ailsa Craig on my way back and forth to Ireland most weeks, in fact I will be flying over it this afternoon. Ailsa Craig is also known as Paddy's milestone as it marks the half way point between Belfast and Glasgow.


 

Girvan Patent Still Single Grain Over 25 Year Old Tasting Notes


William Morrison's Tasting Notes:

Nose: Some Kentucky bourbon and Canadian corn character. Lovely vanilla toffee and oak, mild orange citrus and liquorice notes hovering in the background.

Taste: Rich, medium body oils coat the mouth and keeps the oak in place, smooth creamy toffee, coconut, light liquorice and citrusy orange, lovely sugar coated almonds and fizzy vanilla oak spices.

Finish: The delightfully slow fade of the vanilla sweetness and oak spices is accompanied by a touch of citrus orange.

Comment: A delightfully rich characterful whisky, the lovely citrusy orange was a surprise for a bourbon barrel. A lovely balance of vanillas and fizzy oak spices. A lovely dram and very far from the neutral spirit grain whisky was once considered to be.

SMW Single Grain Whisky Score 90/100

Now available from The Whisky Exchange Priced 245
 

Where To Buy Girvan Whisky Online


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