Review: Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1990 and 1989
Last year, Glenmorangie launched a new series of whiskies called the Bond House series, because it’s the last stocks named after the original production facility the distillery ever used. The Bond House series is open ended, and will contain whiskies aged between 25 and 30 years — with each designed to be very different from one another.
Stocks are low, and with Bond House #1, the Grand Vintage Malt 1990, they were so rare we never got to taste it when it was released in 2017. Today we are fortunate to bring you coverage not just of Bond House #1, but also of the newly released Bond House #2, 2018’s installment in the series.
Both were tasted at a live event in Sausalito, California.
Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1990 – This 2017 release is a 26 year old whiskey, a vatting of bourbon barrel and Oloroso sherry barrel stock, both fully matured (i.e., this is not a finished whisky). The nose is downright gorgeous, a mix of sharp citrus, light raisin notes, and sweet dates, lush and inviting. On the palate, the whisky totally explodes, showing lots of lemon and orange fruit, apricots, some almonds, and a bit of coconut. Nougat notes layer on more chewy sweetness on the finish, keeping the focus squarely on delighting the palate and the mind. 86 proof. A+ / $600
Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1989 – The date is older, but don’t get confused, this is the 2018 Bond House #2 release, released at 27 years of age in bourbon barrels, with an unusual finishing stint in Cote Rotie wine barrels. This wine (a modern release was tasted at the event) is funky, with a gamy, peppery note that dominates heavy red and black fruit elements. Its impact on the whisky is evident, giving it a much darker color and a bolder nose — sharp, with some of that pepper coming through. The palate is nutty, with toasted coconut notes and more hints at that wine finish, which provide some notes of roasted meat and a lingering earthiness. Sultry on the finish, it smolders more than it lingers. 86 proof. A / $800