Review: Glenfiddich 30 Year (2010 Release)

For my first review on this website, I thought I’d start off with a bang and review something interesting. I recently wrote down some notes for Glenfiddich 30 Year and figured that this was as good a place as any to start this online journey.

Funny story. This is actually the third time I’ve tried this exact expression. However, this is the very first time I was able to write down/remember any tasting notes. I actually tried this expression twice in one day at the distillery. The first time, I was a part of a very impromptu tasting that had me sampling 4 expressions in about 5 minutes. I essentially chased Glenfiddich 30 with a Glenfiddich 1973 single cask (which was in turn chased with Glenfiddich 40). There was no way I was remembering any one tasting note from that flavor overload. That night, Glenfiddich was picking up the bar tab at the hotel we were staying at. By the time I tried the 30 year again, I was a good 7-8 whiskies deep already. Again, tasting notes escaped me. Luckily, the third time’s the charm and I was finally able to give this wonderful expression the attention it deserved.

This whisky was matured for at least 30 years in both ex-Bourbon and ex-Oloroso sherry casks.

Glenfiddich 30 Year

Glenfiddich 30 Year - 43% ABV
Category Notes
Appearance Golden amber
Nose Old wood, spice, leather, licorice, grapes, vanilla, winey, floral, sherry, raisins, citrus fruits.
Taste Oaky, fruitier than the nose suggests, cloves, cinnamon, dried fruits, mulling spices, sherry, floral, honey. The spice balances out really nicely with a creamy vanilla note after several minutes. There’s a slightly sour note that I notice in a lot of Glenfiddich. Sometimes, it’s a turn off. In this case, there’s just a tiny little bit of it and it works well here.
Finish A long spicebomb finish of baking spices atop plenty of wood, caramel, vanilla, dried cherries, and old cigar box.
Overall Thoughts Glenfiddich gets a lot of flak by being an industry leader that sells a LOT of bottles each year worldwide. The core range is mostly bottled at 40% ABV and like Glenlivet, that turns a lot of people off to the rest of the range. I believe this was the first release that Brain Kinsman oversaw himself and I really think he nailed it. This 30 year expression certainly tastes old, but it's not overoaked. Like The Balvenie Tun 1401 and Compass Box: The General, this offering has that big blast of old, spicy, leathery oak that I think makes a whisky shine. Your results may vary, but I really love this stuff.
Total Score 95/100