Friday 3 June 2022

Gordon & MacPhail "Private Collection 1952 from Glen Grant Distillery Platinum Jubilee Edition" 70yo [Tasted #568]

It's been less than a month since I wrote about this 64yo 1957 "Mr George Legacy" 2nd Edition Glen Grant, and if that was the oldest whisky I was to try this year, I'd consider it a pretty good year....but the fine people at Gordon & MacPhail had other plans, and were kind enough to send a sample of something even more special, commemorating an event that most of us will likely never again experience in our lifetimes.

I'm talking about the Queen's Platinum (70th) Jubilee, and the Gordon & MacPhail "Platinum Jubilee Edition" 70yo 1952 Glen Grant, bottled for the occasion. Not the oldest whisky we've tried on the site, but impressively, the equal second.

Bottled on the 6th February (the same date as Her Majesty's accession to the throne) after maturing for 7 decades in a first fill Sherry butt, the whisky serves as a fitting tribute to Her Majesty, having served the same amount of time on the throne.

Distilled on 26th January 1952, and bottled 70 years later at a cask strength 52.3% ABV, the "Gordon & MacPhail Private Collection 1952 from Glen Grant Distillery" sees just 256 bottles released worldwide, with a recommended retail price of £20,000, available from Gordon & MacPhail's own online shop in the UK, and no doubt Master of Malt for International buyers in due course. No word yet on Hong Kong or Australian pricing.

In support of the Queen’s ‘green canopy’ initiative and building on the successful 2021 partnership with Scottish charity Trees for Life we mentioned here, Gordon & MacPhail is donating a further £20,000 from the proceeds of the release.

So having well and truly established the whisky's suitability for such a momentous occasion, let's find out how it tastes...

Gordon & MacPhail "Private Collection 1952 from Glen Grant Distillery Platinum Jubilee Edition" 70yo (52.3% ABV, 70yo, Cask #381, One of 256 bottles, Speyside, £20,000)
Colour: Mahogany gold.

Nose: Fresh leather, waxed apples and juicy sultanas, followed by orange marmalade. Give it time (as you must always with such an old and complex whisky), and herbal notes (mint predominantly) and cigars emerge.

Palate: Hugely rich and mouthfilling, there are initial wisps of smoke, followed by dark chocolate, then milk chocolate, cigar humidor, oranges (orange cakes actually), then slight hints of mint. After time, notes of blackcurrant emerge. It's not an in-your face sherry bomb, it's more of a subtle, complex, evolving sherried dram. Impressive, hugely impressive.

Finish: Long and minty, with lingering grapefruit hints and minimal oaky notes.

Rating (on my very non-scientific scale): 92/100. Not quite the same intensity of sherry in the 64yo 1957 "Mr George Legacy" 2nd Edition, more of a subtle, intricate dram giving layers of different notes as time goes on. A fitting tribute to Her Majesty if ever there was one.


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