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Glenmorangie "Allta" Private Edition Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) (Previously $100)

SKU #1401121 92 points Whisky Advocate

Outer quote mark This Private Edition expression was made using a strain of yeast found growing on local barley. It was aged for approximately 8 years in mostly second-fill and refill bourbon casks. Barley sugar and honey on the nose, followed by lily of the valley, lavender, and white pepper. Big gingery fruit notes on the palate; fresh-squeezed orange juice, vanilla, and black pepper. The finish is long and attractively earthy. *Editors' Choice* (GS, Summer 2019) Inner quote mark

K&L Notes

The tenth expression in the always anticipated Private Edition releases from the Glenmorangie Distillery. Allta means "wild" in Scots Gaelic, and that's exactly how Dr. Bill likes it. He may not seem like the wild type, but when you spend some time with him you'll realize that he's a bit of a thrill seeker. He's really let loose with this one. The Allta utilizes a proprietary yeast strain harvested in the wild from locally grown barley. A tip of the proverbial cap to the late great Michael Jackson, who once wrote about the significance of Glenmo's "house" yeast in the creation of the distillery's unique flavor profile. Modern science and industrial best practices have moved distillers away from relying on natural yeast to ferment, but the notion inspired Dr. Bill to try something that they'd never tried before. The good Doctor, having a PhD in yeast physiology, has always been very keen on fermentation's significant influence on the final product. He jumped at the opportunity and isolated a unique strain of yeast on a stalk of local Cadboll barley. The spirit spent 10 years in the highest quality American oak. This most unique experiment has succeeded in making a malt that exemplifies the grace and style of the distillery, while offering a richer even more fruit driven spirit. They've really turned the Glenmo Allta way up to eleven here. Definitely, the Morangiest Glenmorangie we've ever tried and a significant data point in the hypothesis that yeast really does matter.

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By: Heather Vander Wall | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 4/27/2019 | Send Email
This very intriguing new edition from Glenmorangie is exactly the type of Scotch to garner my attention. It's not outspoken or overdone, but is more complex and subtle than most. The premise here is that Scotch, like beer or wine, can be made with native yeast strands, which more truly express the place from which this spirit hails. Glenmorangie has done an excellent job crafting an a native yeast Scotch that still has the classic Glenmorangie house style, but also features subtle autolytic characteristics.

By: Cameron Hoppas | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/18/2019 | Send Email
At first whiff, I thought I was picking up something vinous, but I'm thinking now, its a combination of delicate fruit aromas I normally associate with wine. On the nose, fresh stone fruit and citrus floral's lead with a dusty earthiness not far behind. On the palate, I pick up a little more brown sugar, buttery creaminess and vanilla spice. On the finish, some darker baking spice and rich orange oils become more pronounced. I love this scotch for it's seamless marriage of delicate and elegant aromas, with rich deep texture and complexity.

By: Neal Fischer | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/18/2019 | Send Email
This is a lovely little afternoon snack of a Scotch opening on aromas of butter cookies and Earl Grey tea with warmed honey stirred in. Soft aged leather notes come out along with gentle spices and subtle tobacco leaf scents. Rounding out the nose are hints of polished oak and shaved coconut. The spices and leather characteristics are more pronounced on the palate, and to that fruit flavors emerge with nectarine and fresh orange standing out the most. There's a nice line of fresh baked bread running through the whole experience, and then the dram drifts into a smooth finish ending with cooling mint.

By: Jeffrey Jones | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/14/2019 | Send Email
This is a delicious single malt that should appeal to many people. In the nose, there are honey and wax aromas. In the the mouth, it is what one would expect from Glenmorangie, a whisky that is both tasty and easy to drink. It is subtle and sweet, with balance and finesse. There is a juicy, mouth-coating finish. I think that this is better without the addition of water.

By: Jackson Lee | K&L Staff Member | Review Date: 3/14/2019 | Send Email
While I typically think of whisky “terroir” as being the barrel aging process (temperature, humidity, char level, wood type, atmosphere, and so on), Glenmorangie highlights the yeast strain. Naturally occurring on the barley used to produce the whisky, the yeast strain was cultivated in order to express the flavor of the environment where the grain was grown. On the nose, prominent oak spice comes through but as it fades, honey graham cracker, apricot crisp, toffee, and cut grass become more apparent. The texture is soft and creamy, with light brown sugar and vanilla being the star players, while there is also a hint of sweet orange citrus juice. The finish is just as sweet, with a medium length, giving you a dry, sweet cereal grain note and texture at the very end. A fun whisky to drink while contemplating the magical role yeast plays in our lives.

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