Glenfiddich’s latest whisky experiment whips up a storm

Canadian Icewine casks bring a sweet change to 21-year-old whisky

By Demi Dalton 31/05/2018

The latest instalment in Glenfiddich’s limited-edition Experimental Series whisky certainly lives up to its name: Glenfiddich Winter Storm is finished in casks from Canadian Icewine, a peculiarity of far northern climes where grapes are harvested at night, while partially frozen. Glenfiddich Winter Storm is a dram described as dry and complex, much like the season it represents. Its soft notes are evocative of candied fruit and Turkish delight, with a drying sensation carried through from the Icewine.

The Glenfiddich Malt Master, Brian Kinsman, travelled to Canada in 2016, where he visited the Peller Estate winery in Niagara. There, Kinsman learned of Icewine grape picking by moonlight at minus-10 ˚C. Returning to The Glenfiddich Distillery in Dufftown, Scotland, Kinsman experimented with several variations of French oak Icewine casks, filling different Glenfiddich aged malts for up to six months.

“Only the rarer whiskies, those aged for 21 years, could cope with the extra Icewine intensity,” Kinsman explained. “Having more tannins, extracted from years in oak, these malts brought out a uniquely fresh lychee note, instead of being swamped by sweetness.”

The result is a distinguished 21-year-old Glenfiddich. Embracing combinations of both unexpected flavours and sweet oakiness to satisfy the palate, with a hint of tropical fruit notes and the Icewine that betrays its origins.
Peller Estates VP of Winemaking, Craig McDonald – an Australian, who started his winemaking career in Mudgee – adds, “It was a privilege to work with Brian on this experiment. We go to extreme lengths to produce our intensely sweet Icewine and we are always looking for ways to push the boundaries of taste, so I was intrigued to see how it could be used to create a new and unexpected whisky. The result is a unique combination of the warming soul of whisky, and the frozen notes of Icewine”.
Issued in limited edition and priced at $350.00, Glenfiddich Winter Storm is available in stores Australia-wide later this month.

For more information visit http://www.glenfiddich.com/

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