Review: Glenmorangie Ealanta

History

Glenmorangie stillsGlenmorangie is one of the most well known brands in the world, consistently among the top three in scotch sales. The distillery’s ‘Original’ expression is the best selling whisky in Scotland. William Matheson founded the distillery in 1843 in a small town called Tain located in the Highland region. Purportedly, illegal distilling had taken place at Morangie Farm Brewery since the mid 1600s. Upon takeover, Matheson purchased second hand stills from a gin distillery. Standing at 26 feet, the stills are much taller than traditional pot stills used in whisky production. The neck is 16 feet tall and is said to create an extremely light tasting spirit.

Currently the distillery is owned by Moet Hennessy Louis Vutton who is trying to re-position Glenmorangie as a luxury brand. Lately the distillery has been experimenting with a variety of different seasoned casks to create new and exciting whisky. The distillery owns an oak forest in the Ozark Mountains and typically leases out the newly made barrels to Jack Daniels and Heaven Hill distillery to be filled with bourbon for four years. Afterwards the bourbon aged casks make their way to Glenmorangie to mature their spirit.

Glenmorangie Eatlanta is the fourth annual release for the distillery which spends 19 years in virgin American white oak casks. The porous oak comes from the Mark Twain National Forest in the mountains of Missouri.  When Glenmorangie receives the virgin oak it has been dry aged for two years, heavily toasted and lightly charred to achieve maximum flavor. The oak is intentionally unseasoned when the Ealanta spirit goes in the casks.

Tasting Notes

Nose: unassuming, honey, vanilla, custard, oak, banana

Mouth: complex, peach, stone fruit notes, citrus, surprisingly bold, honey, florals

Finish: fades slowly, somewhat strong, oak flavor lingers

Score: 85/100

Verdict: At $120 a bottle Glenmorangie Ealanta is a bit overpriced in my opinion. While the flavor profile is complex and has a nice mixture of fruit notes, citrus and honey, it still doesn’t justify the high price tag. For my money I’d rather get a cask strength Glenfarclas for $20-$30 cheaper. Now if we remove price from the discussion, Ealanta is a very intriguing light whisky. The palate is accessible and delicate on the mouth like a young whisky but the flavor profile has the complexity of an 18 year old. The unique combination of peach, citrus, honey and florals is a product of aging in virgin white oak. Ealanta is a very drinkable whisky, but albeit pricey to be an everyday dram.

Where to Buy

Astor Wines & Spirits - 399 Lafayette St New York, NY 10003
Park Avenue Liquor Shop - 292 Madison Avenue, New York, NY 10017

Where to Sip

Flatiron Room - 37 W. 26th St. New York, NY 10010
On the Rocks - 696 10th Ave New York, NY 10019
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