Aberfeldy 21 and Glenfiddich 18

I’m often asked what a good starting malt whisky is for an non whisky drinker.  I usually try people on something sweet, honeyed and floral yet smooth and easily drinkable. As funny as it is to start someone on a Laphroiag it may just put them off…

What about upgrading these easy drinking drams? What do the older expressions have to offer?

I recently tried the Glenfiddich 18 for the first time and it struck me as very well rounded, balanced and the kind of whisky you could spend all night with.  Alongside this is the Aberfeldy 21, another well aged yet smooth easy drinker. If its an easy drinking dram you are after these are good choices but would you spend the extra to upgrade from the base expressions? It really depends on how deep your pockets are.  Both are fantastic examples of what an extra few years maturation can achieve. 

Aberfeldy 21

  

On the nose its a big waxy, honey prescence with lingering orange tang. The palate is, again, very honeyed, smooth and balanced fading to sweet wood notes with just a little spice to make it interesting. This is a great example of a nice easy drinker, ideal example of the Aberfeldy expressions.

Avaliable online (sample also) here.

Glenfiddich 18

  

The nose is toffee and fruits with a very slight dryness and lingering wood.  The palate is very much the Glenfiddich style but richer and deeper whilst maintaining a smooth balance. Subtle oak notes and a mild salted caramel make for a pleasant finish.

Avaliable online (sample also) here.

Verdict? if you like the younger expressions its a great exercise to taste these ones and note the difference. Both much richer and smoother but retaining a plesant, easy drinking chararcter.  Bigger budget easy drinkers. 

At the time of writing it is worth noting that the Glenfiddich however is almost half the cost of the Aberfeldy. Those extra few years maturation comes at a premium although I would say the Aberfeldy has a fuller, richer taste.

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