The 15 Year Old gets its distinctive rich and exotic character from a process of selective maturation in which a proportion of the spirit is matured in French oak casks. The Glenlivet distillers were one of the first to use French oak for making whisky, a technique that has since been imitated the world over.
The Limousin oak is used is cut in France’s Dordogne region, where it’s often used to mature cognacs. Its low density allows whisky to sink deep into the wood, and the blenders carefully control how long the whisky matures in the casks so as not to overpower the desired result: a unique, pleasing spiciness.This process increases the intensity of the whisky, creating a rich, creamy finish, with buttery notes. The 15 Year Old is deep gold in colour, and leaves behind traces of sweet almond and spice. It’s luxury in a glass.
Founded by George Smith, The Glenlivet has been crafted in the remote Livet Valley, at the heart of Scotland's Speyside region, since 1824. Initially, George Smith was a farmer who used to have illicit stills. In 1824, he founded the first legal distillery in the parish of Glenlivet, thus legalising the already famous illicit whisky from Scotland. He went on to establish the brand’s reputation as the best whisky on the market.
In 1884, a court ruling officially gave George Smith's single malt the exclusive right to be called The Glenlivet. At the start of the 20th century, The Glenlivet became the favourite whisky for enthusiasts throughout the British Empire. Following the end of Prohibition in the United States, its reputation grew in America, with The Glenlivet quickly becoming the No.1 single malt in the USA – a position it continues to enjoy today.
The Glenlivet owes its unique taste to a number of specific factors relating to its production and location. Indeed, the distillery is located in the Cairngorms National Park, at over 270 metres above sea level. According to weather records, it is considered to be the coldest place in Britain, characterised by strong winds and heavy snowfalls in winter.
Water is drawn from Josie’s Well, a source of hard mineral water, which enables complex aromas to develop during the distillation process. Then, the lantern-shaped stills used for distilling give the spirit its outstanding balance and strong character. Lastly, a careful ageing process, particularly in American oak casks, gives The Glenlivet its full flavour.
Creamy, rich, buttery
Fruit and nut
Lingering, sweet almond and spice
Deep, intense gold