Review: Glenrothes 1991 Vintage

Glenrothes is an interesting distillery. Like Dalmore, I always assume that anything put out by Glenrothes is going to be mediocre and that includes independent bottlings. They do a lot of things sorta kinda ok, but nothing ever stands out for me. With that said, I’m always willing to revisit distilleries over time to see if my tastes have changed. Much like Balblair, Glenrothes puts out most of their releases in vintages rather than standard age statements. This allows the whisky to mature until such a time that the master blenders feel it’s appropriate to bottle. The Glenrothes 1991 vintage was bottled in 2005 making it 14 years of age. The photo of this whisky by a roaring fire is also a clue that this is a review from the SMS archives. It’s not fireplace season quite yet here.

glenrothes1991

Glenrothes 1991 Vintage - 43% ABV
Category Notes
Appearance Golden
Nose Light and fruity, vanilla, yellow delicious apple, berries, heather, cane sugar, malty. After several minutes, I find some spice and orange peel.
Taste Very clean tasting. Fresh fruit salad, vanilla, Swedish fish, milk chocolate, some citrus in the background.
Finish Crisp, but rather short. More fruit and some unexpected caramel, autumn spices and a bit of smokiness at the very end.
Overall Thoughts This whisky is slightly underwhelming (especially in the finish) but there's complexity here if you're patient enough to look for it. It was really closed off for the first 15 minutes. Giving it time in the glass did wonders to let this one open up a bit. I had this once before a few years ago and remember liking it more back then. Perhaps my taste has evolved since then. Glenrothes is pretty low on my list of favorite Glen distilleries and it’s not because I hate their stuff. It just has yet to really wow me.
Total Score 83/100