There are plenty of nations renowned for their single malt: the States, Taiwan, Japan, but to be Scotch whiskey, it has to be made in Scotland. But that’s just the beginning, as the different regions of Scotland produce plenty of fine variations of the much beloved spirit.
Whether you’re looking to buy Glenfarclas online or looking for something like GlenDronach, we’ve got you covered with a list of the very best Scotch whiskeys in 2021.
Glenfarclas 25 Year Old
Tasting notes: chocolate, orange & nuts
The family-owned and operated Glenfarclas has been producing fine whiskey for six generations. They make this incredibly balanced, highly affordable scotch with a chocolatey, citrusy flavour. It is made with spring water that flows down the Speyside hills, and is aged in oloroso casks for a sherry-like, nutty finish that is great for having with meals. Glenfarclas is less than $10 per year of ageing, making it probably the best value-for-money scotch available.
Aberfeldy 12 Year Old
Tasting notes: Bittersweet, Bright, cherry cola & tannic
The Aberfeldy 12 Year Old provides a delightful, affordable option from a distillery that has been making fine scotch for over 100 years. The distillery is located along the Pitilie Burn, a rushing stream whose clear, fresh water helps produce wonderful scotch.
This is an everyday scotch, coming with notes of cherry cola and a mid-palate, mouth-coating sweetness that finishes in woody, bittersweet tannins. It’s easy to drink on the rocks, neat, with a little water and added into warming cocktails. It’s quite light at 40% ABV, making it fine for a midday drink, yet full flavour and perfect for knock-off drinks.
Bowmore Darkest 15 Year Old
Tasting notes: Brine, dried fruits, smoke & toffee
This beautiful scotch blends Scotland’s opposing whiskey-making traditions, combining island-grown barley and heavily peated malt to create a fine Bowmore cherrywood-coloured drop. It is mainly aged in bourbon barrels, but spends its final three years in oloroso casks, where the Scotch whiskey begins to take on sherry-esque layers.
What makes it so good is its easy ability to capture both traditions in the flavour, making it a great, salty and sweet balance. Dried fruit, smoke and toffee are finished with an ocean water-like salinity, making it a wonderfully versatile spirit.
The GlenDronach Revival
Tasting notes: Cedar, chocolate-covered cherries, honey & pecans.
With delicious notes of cedar, chocolate-covered cherries, honey and pecans, The GlenDronach Revival 15 year-old Scotch whiskey keeps providing layers of new flavour as you drink, and the flavours continue to develop and deliver. It was a wonderful, elongated finish, partly due to being aged in oloroso and Pedro Ximenez sherry casks.
The GlenDronach Revival begins with an excellent spiced fruit nose and can be enjoyed with aged cheeses, neat with milk chocolate, other food or with an ice cube left in it for a few seconds – spectacular.
Lagavulin Distillers Edition
Tasting notes: Brine, dried fruit, smoke & umami.
Produced in Islay, Lagavulin’s Distillers Edition has a terroir-driven flavour that makes it incredibly distinctive from other Scotch whiskeys. It carries iodine, seaweed, peat and tarry rope finishes. After 16 years, it is transferred into barrels that once contained Pedro Xiemenez, which creates a new, beautiful balance with hunts of sherry. At first it can be challenging to the palate, but as you sip you get taken back to the delicious fruitiness.