Glenfiddich, one of the most traditional single malt Scotch brands, has shown it's fully capable of avant-garde experimentation with its edgy new Project XX bottling. Designed to showcase the brand's "passion for pushing Scotch whisky boundaries" and collaborating with trailblazers from the whisky world and beyond, this is not your grandfather's tipple.
The dark horse drink, priced at $79.99 per bottle, is the result of a collaboration between no fewer than 20 whisky experts and Glenfiddich’s Malt Master, Brian Kinsman. Eschewing traditional whisky making techniques, Kinsman first selected experts from 16 countries around the world: the U.S., Canada, France, Germany, Taiwan, China, South East Asia, Ukraine, Brazil, England, Scotland, Mexico, The Netherlands, South Korea, Russia and South Africa.
He then invited them each to select a cask of whisky, 20 in total – hence XX – from a warehouse at the historic Glenfiddich Distillery in Dufftown, Scotland. The experts, many of whom are the foremost authorities on single malt in their respective countries, applied different criteria to choosing among the precious whiskies aging in wood barrels.
Kinsman's ambition was to create one remarkable single malt, by combining the curiosity and knowledge of the 20 experts, who among them selected some of the most unusual whiskies from Glenfiddich’s famous stocks. The rare aged malts were matured in different types of wood as well, from port pipes to ancient sherry butts and first fill bourbon casks.
Finally, all 20 casks were married together in a small batch vatting, creating an utterly unique whisky that can never be duplicated anywhere in the world. The result is unpredictable and delicious, showing Glenfiddich's warm, summery character at first sip but then revealing multiples flavors of "candy floss, cinnamon spice, almonds, rich port tannins and the odd hint of licorice,’’ Kinsman notes.
This marks only the second release in Glenfiddich's Experimental Series, focusing on using unique and innovative production processes to offer a new kind of malt whisky experience. The first was the Glenfiddich India Pale Ale Cask Finish, finished in IPA craft beer casks carefully selected by Kinsman and a local Speyside craft brewer. And the sky is literally the limit on what they could do next....