Glenmorangie has announced the second limited release in the Bond House No. 1 Vintage collection: Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1989, the first Glenmorangie expression to be part-matured in ex-Côte-Rôtie casks.
Glenmorangie’s Bond House No. 1 Vintage collection takes its name from the largest of Glenmorangie’s 19th century Bonded Warehouses. For generations, Warehouse No. 1 was home to Glenmorangie’s casks of maturing spirit, but in 1990 as the distillery sought to meet surging demand for its single malt around the world, Warehouse No. 1 was transformed into a new still house, known today as Glenmorangie’s Highland Cathedral.
The story of Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1989, 43% ABV, begins with some of the last spirit to ever emerge from the distillery’s former still house. While select parcels of 1989 spirit lay maturing in casks, Dr. Bill Lumsden, Glenmorangie’s director of distilling, whisky creation & whisky stocks, wanted to honor Warehouse No. 1’s legacy with a cask assemblage.
Lumsden arranged for select parcels of the 27-year-old single malt to be finished in a handful of casks, including those that once contained Côte-Rôtie wine from the northern Rhône wine region of France, the company says. Wine from the Côte-Rôtie appellation is created from the co-fermentation of shiraz and viognier grapes. As the Côte-Rôtie-aged parcels reached their prime, Lumsden reunited them with spirit from the same vintage finished in ex-Oloroso sherry and ex-bourbon casks.
The result is a single malt with a nose of toasted marshmallow, almond, and a perfumed top note, the company says, plus classic, buttery scents of vanilla and fudge, notes of baked apples, red fruits, blackcurrants, tropical fruits, fragrant wood smoke, freshly baked bread, and beeswax. On the palate is a oily, viscous mouthfeel with a gentle peppery sensation, plus baked apples, fudge, and gentle citrus flavors.
The finish is floral orange blossom and honey, hints of eucalyptus oil, and sweet aniseed, along with some leather and oak, the company says. The addition of water brings more tropical fruits and an intensified citrus note, like dried zest of clementine. The finish ends with classic wood spices and oak shavings.
The suggested retail price for Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1989 is $655 per 750-ml. bottle.