Glenfiddich’s New 21-Year Single Malt Is Finished in, Whoa, Ice Wine Barrels

Winter Storm' is an instant collector's item

September 27, 2017 9:00 am

The third installment in what venerable Scotch distiller Glenfiddich has dubbed its Experimental Series (the first: Glenfiddich India Pale Ale Cask Finish, and the second: Glenfiddich Project XX), Glenfiddich Winter Storm is the world’s first single malt finished in Canadian ice wine casks.

To make the whisky, Glenfiddich Malt Master Brian Kinsman experimented with storing different aged varieties of Glenfiddich in French oak ice wine casks sourced from the vineyard of the Peller Estate winery in Canada. 

Kinsman settled on aging 21-year-old Glenfiddich for four months in said casks. The result is toothsome blend of sweetness and acidity from the ice wine and the crispness and oakiness of the Scotch. 

“Something like this should appeal to two distinct groups,” Kinsman told us following Winter Storm’s release. ”The first is whisky connoisseurs. Hopefully it’ll be intriguing to them.  It’s a new twist on a relatively established process of doing a cask finish. The second is people we hope will be attracted by the unusual name and packaging and are drawn to trying something new.”

Though this Experimental Series offering — the priciest ($250) and most limited in terms of supply (only 8,000 bottles were made) — will not be re-released, Kinsman does plan to extend the line again next year.

“We could just produce our 12, 15 and 18 and get out of there. But everyone else is innovating, so you have to keep up,” Kinsman added. “Within our business, there’s a never-ending desire to be the ones that are pushing the category and trying new stuff. It’s fun dong something you’ve never tried before — it keeps it interesting. I’ve never been told ‘No’ by the family behind the distillery.”

If you’re lucky enough to come across a bottle, we suggest you grab it. 

If anything, it’ll be a good companion for the cold climes ahead.


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