How To Read A Glenrothes Label

An auctioneers' guide to the vintages of Glenrothes Single Malt released between 1994 and 2017.

How To Read A Glenrothes Label

Glenrothes the distillery was built in 1878 in Rothes, Speyside, but Glenrothes the brand that we recognise today was developed a little more recently, in 1994, after wine and spirit merchant Berry Bros & Rudd (BBR) took ownership of the distillery in 1993.

 

Rather than putting an age statement on each whisky in the range the wine merchant, inspired by the vintages of French Chateau bottled wines, launched Glenrothes by vintage. The idea behind its vintage-only range was of course to select the best casks from one particular year but also a greater variety of expression than was possible with existing age statement single malts. Each vintage that was bottled would have its own personality whilst retaining the character of the Glenrothes liquid. This is a thread common to vintages of fine wine. Each vintage was finite. Once sold, it would be replaced by another.

 

Since 2017 when the Glenrothes brand was sold to The Edrington Group, the new owners reverted to age statements making these vintages increasingly rare. There are 28 expressions in the vintage series ranging from 1971 to the most recent vintage, a 2001, and the collection includes the extremely limited 1974 vintage.

 

A complete collection being sold at the April auction comes from the customers’ private reserve warehouse within the BBR properties where it has been held since bottling. The collection covers all the vintages sold whilst under the ownership of BBR and includes eight ‘doubles’ where a second vintage was created a few years after the first. The different set of tasting notes reflect the different styles of the bottlings.

 

This is the first complete set to be made available on Whisky.Auction.

 

 

Step

Glenrothes 1971

Rich, fruity, liquorice

The Glenrothes 1971 Restricted Release, bottled in 1999, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Step
Step

Glenrothes 1973

Rich, aromatic, hints of orange peel

The Glenrothes 1973, bottled in 2000, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1974

Fruity, citrus peel, floral top notes

The Glenrothes 1974, bottled in 2003 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1975

Rich fruits, citrus, nutty, toffee, vanilla

The Glenrothes 1975, bottled in 2006, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1975, bottled in 2006 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Glenrothes 1976

Blackberry, hints of vanilla

The Glenrothes 1978 Restricted Release, bottled in 1999, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1978

Rich vanilla, fruit compote, intense spice

The Glenrothes 1978, bottled in 2008, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1978, bottled in 2008 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1979

Delicate, peaty undertones

The Glenrothes 1979, bottled in 1995, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Rich, full aroma, ripe red orange

The Glenrothes 1979, bottled in 2002, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1979, bottled in 2002 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Glenrothes 1981

Rich fruitiness, cinnamon hints

The Glenrothes 1981, bottled in 1999, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1982

Ripe, fruity, vanilla notes

The Glenrothes 1982, bottled in 1996, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1982, bottled in 1997, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1982, bottled in 1999, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1984

Fragrant, sherry overtones

The Glenrothes 1984, bottled in 1995, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Full, spicy, oak and vanilla

The Glenrothes 1984, bottled in 2002, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1984, bottled in 2002 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1984, bottled in 2003, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1984, bottled in 2003 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1985

Aromatic, slight spicyness

The Glenrothes 1985, bottled in 1997, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1985, bottled in 1998, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Rich, creamy, dried fruits

The Glenrothes 1985, bottled in 2005, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1985, bottled in 2005 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1985, bottled in 2006, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1985, bottled in 2006 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1987

Rich flavour, velvety

The Glenrothes 1987, bottled in 1999, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1987, bottled in 2000, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1987, bottled in 2000 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Citrus, orange zest, vanilla notes

The Glenrothes 1987, bottled in 2002, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1987, bottled in 2002 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1987, bottled in 2003, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1988

Rich candied orange peel, fruit compote

The Glenrothes 1988, bottled in 2009, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1989

Mellow, oak and dried fruits

The Glenrothes 1989, bottled in 2000, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1989, bottled in 2001, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1989, bottled in 2001 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1989, bottled in 2002, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1989, bottled in 2002 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1991

Berry fruits, vanilla and butterscotch

The Glenrothes 1991, bottled in 2005, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1991, bottled in 2005 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1991, bottled in 2006, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1991, bottled in 2006 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Berry fruits, vanilla and butterscotch

The Glenrothes 1991, bottled in 2011, 100cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1992

Fruity, ripe black plums & liquorice

The Glenrothes 1992, bottled in 2004, 10cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1992, bottled in 2004, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1992, bottled in 2004 fro USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1992, bottled in 2005, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1992, bottled in 2005 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Enticingly fruit, cooked citrus, creamy vanilla

The Glenrothes 1992 Second Edition, bottled in 2014, 70cl, 44.3% ABV

The Glenrothes 1992 Second Edition, bottled in 2014 for USA market, 75cl, 44.3% ABV

 

 

 

Step

Glenrothes 1994

Soft ripe fruits, toffee & lemon citrus

The Glenrothes 1994, bottled in 2006, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 1994, bottled in 2006 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1995

Red fruits, butterscotch, citrus and spice

Glenrothes 1995, bottled in 2011, 70cl, 43% ABV

Glenrothes 1995, bottled in 2011 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Sweet creamy vanilla, lemon zest and melon

The Glenrothes 1995 American Oak, bottled in 2016, 70cl, 45% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 1998

Lemon citrus, rich vanilla, cinnamon hints

The Glenrothes 1998, bottled in 2009, 70cl, 43% ABV

 

Step

Glenrothes 2001

Sweet oaky vanilla, black cherries & soft spices

The Glenrothes 2001, bottled in 2013, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 2001, bottled in 2013 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 2001, bottled in 2014, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 2001, bottled in 2014 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV

 

Glenrothes 2004

Mango, citrus, sweet oaky vanilla

The Glenrothes 2004, bottled 2017, 70cl, 43% ABV

The Glenrothes 2004, bottled 2017 for USA market, 75cl, 43% ABV