Whenever whisky is aged in barrels, the barrels are rarely virgin casks. They’ve typically had something else in them for a period of time. Macallan has a partnership with Jim Beam and Macallan is aged in what were formerly bourbon casks (it’s pretty standard for scotch to be matured in ex-bourbon casks). Then, you have the various finishes, which typically finish in dessert wine casks like sherry and port.
If you’re familiar with Glenmorangie, you know they have an entire line of finishes from Oloroso to Port to Sauterne (Extra Matured line). Each are dessert wines from various regions and impart different characteristics to the whisky.
So I was surprised to read about their latest release, Glenmorangie Ealanta, included in the Private Edition, which includes Artein, Sonnalta PX, and Finealta. Glenmorangie Ealanta is a 19-year old with 46% alcohol by volume and aged in virgin American white oak. The casks have been heavily toasted but they never held anything else. It’ll be interesting to see what the critics say.