Review No.135. Glen Marnoch Limited Reserve Rum Cask Finish

In these next 3 reviews I will covering Aldi’s Glen Marnoch Limited Reserve collection comprising of a rum, sherry and bourbon cask finishes.  Finishing is the practice of transferring whisky that has been aged in one type of barrel into a different type of barrel.  In this instance when I use the term type I do not mean the size but the type of spirit that has been matured in it previously.  So I would assume the rum cask finish version would have been matured for a certain amount of years in barrels that were previously used for bourbon maturation and then transferred to a cask that was used for rum maturation.  So here the malt will be taking on bourbon and rum flavours.  This practice has been done for many years and I am finding that producers a experimenting with a wider variety of barrels, especially wine casks.  I was looking forward to trying these 3 malts from Aldi as I was curious to see how they differed between each type of finish.


Whisky: Glen Marnoch Limited Reserve Rum Cask Finish Single Malt Scotch Whisky, 40%

Nose: Sweet spice and alcohol heat. Caramelised sugar, cherry, vanilla, cola, cinnamon, cloves and tannin

Taste: Very sweet caramelised sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, chilli

Finish: Vanilla, cola and chilli spice

Score: 2

Summary: This is intensely sweet and spicy for my taste.  There is also the addition of alcohol heat which doesn’t help. I can see how this can work in cocktails.  My experience of rum finished whiskies has not been great, not that I have tried many but I am still to be convinced that rum finishing does anything but make a whisky taste sweeter.



Scoring scale: My scores reflect a balance of the overall experience, availability and cost for a whisky,

1 – not to my preference

2 – tastes fine but does not excite me

3 – more to my liking and would revisit occasionally

4 – very much to my liking and would consider as a regular feature on my whisky shelf

5 – permanent feature on my whisky shelf


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