Glen Elgin 1999 12 year old Dimensions by Duncan Taylor



Glen Elgin was founded by a former manager of nearby Glenfarclas distillery in 1898 and is located in Longmorn within the Speyside region of Scotland. Since the 1930s most of Glen Elgin's production has been used for blending and perhaps is most famously known for being a component of the well-known White Horse blend. The Diageo-owned distillery produces only one single malt whisky for sale to the public; a 12 year old that forms part of the popular Classic Malts Selection. Bottles of Glen Elgin are a rare sight on LCBO shelves and, when we saw the Duncan Taylor Dimensions expression, we leaped at the opportunity. 

While blenders may have praised this whisky's qualities for years, the general public has had to rely on Independent Bottlers to showcase Glen Elgin's versatility and range as Diageo only offers one standard offering of the single malt. Duncan Taylor & Co was established in 1938 and originally operated as a merchant and broker of Scotch Whisky casks to the industry before eventually becoming an award-winning independent bottler. The Dimensions series is their "super-premium collection" that focuses on rare single malt and grain whiskies ranging from 10 to 39 years old. This bottle of Glen Elgin is Batch 001 and was distilled in 1999, aged 12 years, and then bottled in December 2011 at 46% ABV.   

Nose: Delicate and airy with inviting aromas of fresh cut apples and pears in fruit salad, honey, and Licorice Allsorts. Hovering in the background are notes of chocolate mint and candied oranges that gradually assert themselves with air and time. 

Palate: Delicious honey sweetness and more fruit salad; this time dotted with cherries and tangerines. Gentle and medium bodied, the dram also shows just a hint of smoke. A few drops of water brings out malty flavours and an interesting oily nuttiness that coats the mouth, adding yet another dimension to the flavour profile.  
Finish: Dry and surprisingly long! Refined and somewhat tannic, the finish takes on flavours reminiscent of natural fruit leather but without being the slightest bit tart. Gradually and gracefully, the fruitier elements sublimate into mouth-coating milk chocolate before receding slowly down the sides of the tongue.

Overall: Duncan Taylor's Dimensions expression of Glen Elgin is a beautiful whisky and has given me reason to seek out more from this often overlooked distillery. Classy, charming and complex; I love nosing whiskies like this. Those new to single malts will appreciate its smoothness and approachability while those with more experience will be charmed by its understated and layered flavours. With just a handful of bottles left in the province priced at $92.95 in the LCBO, you'd better move quickly if you want a chance to taste this limited and rare bottling of Glen Elgin!

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