12/26/08 Tasting Notes – The Glenlivet 12 – Finding Peach!

The Glenlivet 12Tonight I decided to have some more of The Glenlivet… I feel a little pretentious writing “The” Glenlivet, it’s like when football players say “The” Ohio State University. I suppose The Glenlivet’s history gives it more right to add the “The” than OSU, but in this post I’ll call it Glenlivet from now on! 🙂

Glenlivet is one of my favorite to drink when I was something crisp, smooth, and soothing. It doesn’t have the peatiness and smokiness that my other favorite, Lavagulin, has so I feel compelled to engage it. I can just relax and sip it down.

According to Michael Jackson’s Complete Guide to Single Malt Scotch, the palate is flowery, peachy, notes of vanilla, delicate balance. Having had this many times, I’ve noticed the vanilla flavor in the past (though had a difficult time identifying it) but the peachiness never really struck me too strongly. I think one of the difficulties with the Glenlivet 12 is that the alcohol attacks your senses, dulling them for the flavors that come after it. The heat it brings, both when you taste it and when you sniff it, seems to hide the rest a little unless you carefully look for them. However, as I looked online for tips on how to accentuate my palate, I came across a note about how you should be properly sipping scotch.

I can’t find it but the notes say that when sipping, get enough to coat your moth, and then swirl it around so that you coat everything part of your mouth and tongue. I hadn’t done that in a while so I tried it… and the peachiness came through. It wasn’t until it touched the sides of my tongue did I really discover it. It was a little surprising too because I wasn’t thinking “taste the peach,” I was only thinking “coat my tongue and see what happens.” It was certainly a delight, especially since it came through the heat of the alcohol.

I’ve always enjoyed Glenlivet and haven’t had much of the 12 until recently, opting as the novice does, to go for the older bottles (older is better, right!?); but I’m becoming a fan of the 12 as I notice more of its subtleties. The heat is at times a little off-putting but I don’t mind it too much.