Glenmorangie Malaga 12 years got a finishing maturation in Malaga wine casks

A small batch bottling with honey-sweet, complex aromas


Glenmorangie has mastered the art of whisky maturation in special casks to the finest. Sometimes they use Ruby Port casks like for the Quinta Ruban, sometimes Oloroso and PX sherry casks like for the Lasanta or white wine casks like for the Nectar d’Or to put a special aromatic stamp on the extra matured Glenmorangie whiskies. Now Moet Hennessy has presented the Glenmorangie Malaga 12 years, which is influenced by Andalusian sweet wine casks. The first small batches have already been released, a new one is planned for October 26th as Moet Hennessy Germany announces.

At Glenmorangie, “extra matured” initially means maturation for several years in ex-bourbon barrels, with only first and second fill barrels being used. A subsequent maturation in the respective wine or sweet wine barrels extends not just over months, but over several years.

The Glenmorangie Malaga was aged for 12 years after its distillation on February 18, 2008 (yes, the Moet Hennessy press release actually states the exact date of distillation), starting in ex-bourbon barrels for eight years. For the finishing maturation, Dr. Bill Lumsden, Director of Distilling, Whisky Creation & Whisky Stocks, chose casks that previously contained Malaga Dulce, a Malaga wine with a high residual sugar content. In these ex-Malaga casks, the whisky spent another four years, following the high Glenmorangie standards of extra maturation.

In terms of alcohol content, the 12-year-old Glenmorangie Malaga stands out a bit from the usual extra matured line: It was bottled at 47.3% ABV in August 2020. Unfortunately, the press release does not provide information on the number of bottles available. In contrast to the above-mentioned releases of the extra matured series, the Malaga has the additional designation "Barrel Select Release" and is labeled to be a small batch release.

Producer's tasting notes for the Glenmorangie Malaga Cask Finish 12 years

Color: maroon

On the nose: sweet, rich scents of honey, mead, toffee and baked bread with aromatic tea leaves. Subtle notes of muted herbs and red fruits, followed by milk chocolate. A few drops of water release notes of wood, with frankincense, roasted chestnuts and whole cane sugar.

On the palate: A strong, oily texture conjures up notes of sultanas, raisins and dates on the tongue. Tangerine, milk chocolate, honey and more brown sugar emerge, wonderfully woven with fresh citrus. Then aromas of cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg and star anise before hazelnut, honey and gentle oak notes emerge, before a long, mild finish.

Image: Moet Hennessy