Glen Spey distillery is located in Rothes, Aberlour, Banffshire and was founded in 1878 by James Stuart & Co. when he extended his oatmeal mill to include a distillery under the name of Mill of Rothes.

In 1887 he sold the distillery to W&A Gilbey of London.

Glen Spey suffered a fire in 1920.

In 1962 W&A Gilbey merged with IDV which was taken over by Grand Met. in 1972, then the distillery ran under UDV which all eventually became Diageo.


In 1970 the number of stills was doubled from two to four and now has a capacity of 1.4 million litres of pure alcohol per year.


More great distillery info here thanks to Malt Madness

Distillery photos by kind permission of Teun Van Wel


General whisky characteristics: Nuts, citrus





Glen Spey, Managers Choice, distilled 1996, 52% ABV

American Oak - New Wood, one of 276 bottles

Typical cost of this bottle;


Glass: Classic Malt

Colour: Very pale yellow

Nose: Warming malt, slight citrus and light wood.

Palate: Immediately warming with fruit / berries, followed by a malty, slightly citrus wood.

With 4 drops of water: Smoother but fresher with a little more citrus and wood, but less malt.

With a further 5 drops of water: Smoother with more wood, but less citrus.

Finish: Very long

Overall Impression: An enjoyable whisky, but not overy special. Don't tell me how much it costs!





Independent Bottlers


Malts of Scotland, Glen Spey, distilled 21.11.1977, bottled 10.2009, 31y, 55.8% ABV

bourbon hogshead #3656

Typical cost of this bottle;


Glass: Spiegelau

Colour: Pale yellow / gold

Nose: Initially a nose of good cognac. This soon settles to matured wood with grass and malt, but with an over-riding citrus element, more lemon than orange.

Palate: Smooth with a massive burst of nutty lemon. Almost like a small slice of marzipan-coated lemon.

With 4 drops of water: The nose is more rounded and the palate has less citrus and more marzipan.

As I add more water this reverts back to the cognac nose, but the palate is lighter and fresher with a little more citrus again.

Finish: Long with citrus

Overall Impression: For best results with this whisky it needs a little water, patience and time.



Blackadder, Glen Spey, 12y, 6.4.1999 - Aug 2011, 59.8% ABV

"Riverstown" series, Cask No.125, one of 298 bottles

Typical cost of this bottle;

Reviewed as part of MMA 2011


Glass: Classic Malt

Colour: Extremely pale

Nose: Notes of creamy light cheese, aromatic hay and slightly musty vanilla greet the nose here, but it's all quite slow and subdued.

Palate: This is a little more active than the nose with light peppery vanilla, a certain creaminess, even a suggestion of vanilla cheesecake and a faint fruitiness leading into the finish.

Finish: Long and mildly fruity

Overall Impression: A quite approachable light whisky.










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