The Famous Jubilee was globally released last May to coincide with the commemoration of Her Majesty The Queen's Diamond Jubilee. Bottled at 40% A.B.V, this limited edition expression is the creation of The Famous Grouse master blender Gordon Motion and contains a blended selection of aged single malt (including The Macallan and Highland Park) and sweet grain whiskies to celebrate the Queen's 60 years on the throne.
Canada was one of only a handful of export markets for this special edition blend and about 200 cases found their way to the LCBO. It must have been a long, tedious, voyage for this shipment. The neatly packaged bottles only appeared on the shelves earlier this year in January, 8 months after release and 6 months after the mighty flotilla cruised the Thames. While others in the Commonwealth toasted to Her Majesty's health with a special dram, we didn't know what we were missing.
Here's your leg up on one of the best, limited run, values for blended scotch whisky in the LCBO.
Nose: Surprisingly rich and layered with deliciously inviting aromas of toffee atop rum and raisin ice cream. Poking up through the sherried fruitiness are grassy notes of heather and damp straw. Finally, a thread of smoke rises from the glass bumping into flecks of mint on the way out.
Palate: Medium-bodied with a mouth-coating texture suggesting a high malt content. Soft, almost buttery, oak combine with bright sherried fruit flavours, toffee, and cocoa in an elegant balance indicative of the dram's pedigree.
Finish: Light smokey flavour pleasantly lingers alongside a long bittersweet mocha finish that seems to go on forever. A bit sharper than you'd expect for 40% ABV. That is not to say it's rough or hot but rather it doesn't slide away without letting you know it's on the way down.
Overall: Fans of Highland Park and The Macallan will indubitably enjoy this expression by The Famous Grouse. Approachable, smooth, sweet and smokey, this inexpensive blended scotch whisky ($39.95 at the LCBO) will renew your faith in the beauty of blended scotch whisky. It's a shame that it's a limited run but there's still plenty in stock. With that in mind, the smart buyer will grab 2 bottles while they still can.