The GlenAllachie Distillery has revealed three new bottlings to their Virgin Oak Series.
The new line-up consists of three Speyside Single Malts, including the 15-year-old Scottish Virgin Oak Finish, the 10-year-old French Virgin Oak Finish, and the 10-year-old Chinquapin Virgin Oak Finish.
The oak species, the local terroir and the period of natural air drying, alongside the toasting, charring and coopering of the casks mark the flavour differences between the three bottlings, the distillery noted.
Each expression was first matured in American Oak (Quercus Alba) ex-Bourbon Barrels. To add a distinctive layer of flavour characteristics, the whisky then underwent a secondary maturation period of approximately 18 months in virgin oak casks, all carefully selected by Master Distiller Billy Walker.
The 15-year-old Scottish Virgin Oak is one of the few whiskies to ever be matured in Scottish oak, finished in casks made of Sessile Oak (Quercus Petrae) sourced from the Atlantic coast of Scotland.
Before hosting the spirit, the wood was air dried for 36 months, opening up the oak for maximum flavour extraction.
After toasting and charring to a medium level, the small quantity of casks used have delivered just 2,250 bottles of liquid boasting notes of vanilla, ginger and cloves.
For the 10-year-old French Virgin Oak Finish, Walker sourced casks made of French Oak (Quercus Robur) from the Haute-Garonne region; the wood was air dried for 15 months before filled with the whisky, which features orange, honey and soft spice on the nose.
Finally, the 10-year-old Chinquapin Virgin Oak Finish used wood from the Northern Ozark region of Missouri, USA. Once air dried for nearly four years and toasted to a medium level, the casks made of Chinquapin – a sub species of Quercus Alba – bestow notes of cinnamon, sugar and biscuits upon the spirit.
Walker said: “This expansion of our Virgin Oak Series showcases three superb Single Malts, each with incredibly unique attributes. I’m particularly proud to release a very rare Scottish Virgin Oak bottling; a long-held ambition of mine, with full appreciation of how challenging and expensive it is to work with.
“The result, in my humble opinion, is genuinely outstanding.”