Dram Review: Old Malt Cask Glenrothes 21

This is a special dram for me. It was my last birthday present and I opened it on a balcony on the shores of Loch Lomond. The beautiful setting, the lochside air, the day and the whisky all came together in a great moment for me. I took a photo of that moment and you can see it above the title of this post.

The other reason that this dram is special is that it was a surprise present from Mrs dramstats. There were no hints. In fact I’d never heard of this whisky. But she’d done some research, found this was a well reviewed indie bottling with notes that she thought I might like, and bought me it. Honestly, I think she bought me a better whisky here than I would have had I chosen myself, at least in terms of how interesting it is.

Old malt cask was part of the now broken up Douglas Laing brothers’ company. I think this brand is now in the hands of the company calling themselves Hunter Laing. The principal is that they find excellent casks of old rare single malt, and bottle them at 50%. This cask is 21 years old and from Glenrothes distillery. Here are the dramstats:



  • Price (it was a present so I refuse to look)
  • ABV 50%
  • No Colouring
  • Non chill filtered

Nose: A spice bomb! Ground ginger, pepper, zesty lemon and lime, then rich orange maramlade. So nice! Spicy ginger bread and zesty marmalade.

Palate: Ginger, toffee topped doughnut, the filling from caramel shortbread.

Finish: Orange barley sugar then marmalade with crackly oak, ground ginger and pepper.

Verdict: A cracker and a great example of the spicy character that makes Glenrothes a popular malt with the blenders. Plenty of orange and ginger spice. This is my first Old Malt Cask, but I will be trying others. I must also try to get some Glenrothes. If they still sell this expression, I don’t have a bad word to say about it!



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