As a whiskionado, I’ve been privileged enough to sample several of Scotland’s finest single-malt whiskies.
Three that really stand out are Glenlivet, Glenfiddich and Glenmorangie. Each one has its own distinct taste profile that makes it special in its own way. In this article, I’ll be elucidating the differences between each brand so you can determine what type is right for your palate. Whether you prefer the velvety texture of Glenlivet or the complexity of Glenfiddich or even just the mild sweetness of a glassful of Glenmorangie; these three whiskeys guarantee something for everyone!
When it comes to Glenlivet vs Glenfiddich vs Glenmorangie, many whisky drinkers have a strong opinion on which one is the best. These three distilleries are some of the most well-known in Scotland, and each one has its own unique flavour profile. In this blog post, I will compare Glenlivet vs Glenfiddich vs Glenmorangie and discuss what makes each one stand out from the rest.
For years, Scotch whisky enthusiasts have been fiercely debating the merits of their favourite single-malt offerings. Among the most acclaimed brands are Glenlivet, Glenfiddich and Glenmorangie – each renowned for its exquisite aroma and flavour profile.
With the innumerable brands and varieties of products available, it can be challenging to determine which is best suited for you.
Are you searching for the best single-malt Scotch whisky? If so, look no further! In this article, I will compare three of the most beloved brands: Glenlivet vs Glenfiddich vs Glenmorangie. All three have a variety of taste profiles and histories that make them stand apart from other whiskies – making them prime choices to include in your liquor cabinet. I’ll discuss the differences between these fantastic sippers while helping you decide which is perfect for your palette. So pour yourself a glass, sit back, relax, and let’s explore what makes each one unique!
History: Glenlivet vs Glenfiddich vs Glenmorangie
In order to full appreciate what these whiskies have to offer I thought I’d fill you in on a little background and interesting facts about these three icons of Scottish Whisky.
The Glenmorangie Distillery was founded in 1843 by William Matheson and has been crafting award-winning whisky since then. The distillery is located on the banks of the River Tarbert, near Tain in the Highlands of Scotland. It is one of the oldest operating distilleries in Scotland and is renowned for producing some of the world’s finest single malt Scotch whiskies.
Glenmorangie prides itself on using only traditional methods to craft its whisky. Which includes using the tallest in Scotland at 8.00 m tall, with 5.1372m wide necks, and are claimed by Glenmorangie to produce an extremely light flavour. They are also unique in that they use barley grown locally in the northern Highlands and employ a team of local coopers to repair and maintain their barrels.
The distillery itself has changed little over time, except for a few expansions and renovations here and there. The most famous expansion took place in 1990 when they doubled their capacity with the installation of four new stills; each being taller than traditional stills, which allows them to create a lighter spirit with more delicate aromas and flavours.
At Glenmorangie, experimentation is key – many different styles have been created over its long history. It has also introduced innovative techniques such as finishing its whisky in different types of wood casks or blending two distinct malts to create new flavour combinations. For example following the acquisition by LVMH, Glenmorangie produced a rare limited edition aged in casks previously used to mature Château Margaux; these bottlings are now (2011) extremely rare and are priced at around £1600/$2022.
Overall, Glenmorangie Distillery stands out from other Scotch whisky producers because it remains dedicated to preserving traditional methods while experimenting with new ideas that add complexity to its signature style. Its commitment to quality ensures every bottle contains exquisite flavour notes that will captivate any whisky fan’s palate.
Glenlivet distillery is one of the oldest and most celebrated whiskey distilleries in Scotland. Although the origins of Glenlivet are not known, it was first recorded in 1824 when George Smith became the first licensed distiller in the Valley of Glenlivet, also known as “The Single Malt Whisky Capital of the World”. Since then, it has been producing whisky that has made its way into glasses all over the world.
The history of Glenlivet is steeped in tradition and hardship. With smuggling being rampant in Scotland back in the day, many distilleries had to resort to illicit production practices such as using worm tubs for cooling their whisky and hiding stills from authorities. It was only after George Smith secured a license that he could legally produce whisky without fear of persecution. He also set a high standard for quality by creating a unique style of whisky; one which would later be trademarked as ‘The Glenlivet’.
Since its inception in 1824, The Glenlivet has earned a reputation as one of the finest single malt Scotch whiskeys available today. In fact, every drop of The Glenlivet contains a complex mix of flavours created over generations through careful distilling practices and blending techniques acquired over time by master craftsmen at The Glenlivet Distillery.
In 2001, the Glenlivet Distillery was acquired by Pernod Ricard, a French multinational alcoholic beverages company. This move was a strategic one as it made Pernod Ricard the world’s second-largest Scotch whisky producer and helped them to move into the luxury whisky market. Since then, they have invested heavily in The Glenlivet Distillery and increased their production capacity, creating more jobs in the area and allowing them to experiment with different processes and techniques.
The acquisition of Glenlivet by Pernod Ricard has enabled the distillery to expand its portfolio of products significantly. From new cask offerings such as The Glenlivet Founder’s Reserve, Master Distiller’s Reserve and Xtra Old Fine Oak, to limited edition bottlings like The Glenlivet 18-Year Old Limited Edition and The Glenlivet 25-Year Old Single Cask Strength – there is now something for every taste.
Pernod Ricard has also implemented several sustainability initiatives at The Glenlivet, including reducing the amount of water used in production by 50% since 2001 and transitioning from coal-fired stills to gas-fired ones in 2006. This not only reduces their environmental impact but also gives them greater control over the quality of their spirit.
In addition to these changes, Pernod Ricard has given Glenlivet access to global markets as well as modern technology that can help enhance its already renowned whiskies. They have also taken steps towards preserving traditional methods by bringing on apprenticeships for whisky makers who learn about all aspects of crafting whisky without sacrificing quality or tradition.
The acquisition of The Glenlivet distillery by Pernod Ricard marked a significant milestone in both companies’ history; it provides an opportunity for collaboration between two industry leaders and sets an example for sustainable whisky production around the world.
Today, The Glenlivet stands out among its peer’s thanks to its distinctive fruity aroma with hints of dry spices and an exceptionally smooth finish. These characteristics are a testament to the team’s pursuit of excellence throughout its long history. Every cask is personally chosen and monitored onsite by specialist nose-and-palate experts to ensure The Glenlivet’s signature character remains consistent year after year.
Glenlivet still uses wooden washbacks which is contrary to many of its competitors who made the move to stainless steel. Glenlivet believe this makes for a much more subtle flavour profile even though they are much harder to clean!
Overall, The Glenlivet stands apart from other Scotch whiskies due to its commitment towards quality craftsmanship along with its willingness to embrace innovation instead of resting on tried-and-tested methods alone – which has resulted in some exceptional whisky expressions that have delighted palates around the world for close to 200 years now!
The Glenfiddich Distillery, founded in 1886 by William Grant, is one of the oldest and most respected Scotch whisky distilleries in Scotland. The distillery was originally established to create a superior single-malt whisky that could rival those of its competitors. Since day one, Glenfiddich has been dedicated to crafting high-quality whisky that adheres to the traditional methods passed down through generations of the Grant family.
The first batch of whisky produced at the distillery was released in 1887, and since then it has become renowned for its unique flavour profile which includes hints of fruit and spice. This is achieved through its traditional methods such as utilizing copper pot stills for distillation and ageing the whisky in oak casks for at least three years before bottling.
In addition to producing a core range of whiskies, Glenfiddich has also been known to experiment with innovative techniques such as using different types of wood casks or barrel finishing (wherein they ‘finish’ certain batches of whisky in barrels previously used to age sherry or Port wine). These techniques are designed to bring out new and surprising flavours which add complexity to their signature style.
Over time, Glenfiddich has earned a reputation as one of the finest single-malt Scotch whiskies available today. For over a century, Glenfiddich has been the world’s top-selling single malt and is now available in 180 countries worldwide. Additionally, this remarkable whiskey holds an incredible 35% market share of all single malts sold globally.
Its commitment towards upholding traditional values while embracing innovation continues to this day and has resulted in some truly exceptional expressions that have delighted whisky fans around the world for generations now!
Glenlivet vs Glenfiddich vs Glenmorangie: The 12 year old comparison
In order to best explain the differences and similarities of these whisky brands we decided to discuss all three brand’s 12 year old single malts. We chose to compare the 12-year-olds as each brand has one and they are all relatively accessible in price. So most likely if you are trying these brands for the first time the 12 is probably where you’d start.
Having tried all three of these renowned Scotch whiskies before, I can say that each of them brings something unique to the table in terms of flavour, texture and overall character. I’ve gone into varying degrees of detail below, some notes at a glance for those wanting a quick resume of what you can expect from a dram. And for those wanting a more detailed breakdown I have expanded below. Enjoy!
Glenlivet vs Glenfiddich vs Glenmorangie: The taste
Glenlivet 12 flavour profile
Nose: Apricot, pineapple, greengages, citrus blossom, and toasted teacake.
Palate: Rich in vanilla and butter, bright fruit notes
Finish: Malt, oaky spice, hint of red apple juice
Price: £30 / $36
Glenlivet 12 in more detail
The Glenlivet 12-Year-Old Single Malt Whisky is a classic expression from the Speyside region that has earned a reputation as one of the best single malts available. The nose opens with a delightful bouquet of sweet dried fruits and aromatic spices, balanced out by subtle nuances of oak and vanilla. On the palate, it’s bright and fruity, with notes of honeyed apple, pear, and citrus zest all leading into a warming finish layered with oak tannins and just a hint of smoke.
This remarkable whisky isn’t just an enjoyable sip – its commitment towards quality craftsmanship is evident in every bottle. It offers an amazingly complex flavour profile thanks to its use of copper pot stills for distillation along with careful ageing in both European and Amercian oak casks allowing it to pick up new flavours along the way.
The Glenlivet 12 stands out in terms of complexity – even among its esteemed peers like Glenfiddich and Glenmorangie. Its exceptional character is perfectly complemented by its affordable price point, making it easily accessible to whisky fans around the world. Those who crave something unique should definitely give this whisky a try – it won’t disappoint! It’s especially enjoyed during the warmer months if you are looking for something bright and fruity to enjoy on a summer evening.
Tasting notes at a glance: Glenfiddich 12
Nose: Orchard fruit, malt, honey, citrus
Palate: Smooth, spicy, light
Finish: Touch of oak, sweet, fruity, oily
Price: £28 / $34
Glenfiddich 12 in more detail
Glenfiddich 12-Year-Old Single Malt Whisky which comes from Speyside’s Dufftown distillery and has become famous for its fruity character over the years.
For those just starting their whisky journey, Glenfiddich 12 is an ideal choice. Its smooth and pleasant flavour profile won’t overwhelm the novice drinker – yet its impressive record of awards and critical acclaim means that even experienced connoisseurs will be impressed by this high-quality spirit.
The Glenfiddich 12-year Scotch whisky is aged to perfection in a combination of American and European oak barrels, allowing for its distinctive flavour profile.
Exquisitely fresh and fruity with a delicate hint of pear, this unique yet subtly balanced blend is sure to delight your taste buds! This fruitness comes from the high cut point William Grant was adamant about.
The first cut point, therefore, comes when the heads have condensed out of the still. The master distiller judges when it’s right to direct the flow of the fresh spirit into a second container. This means it’s the highest quality liquid which will go on to be matured in casks to be turned into whisky.
The aroma offers tones of apples, pears and light floral notes while flavours on the palate include Glenfiddich’s signature flavour profile is marked by its sweetness and fruitiness, which melds into a unique combination of creamy butterscotch, malt, and subtle oak.
There’s a pleasant sweetness on the finish that lingers pleasantly on the tongue while also providing some nice complexity to round out this whisky in excellent fashion.
Glenmorangie Lasanta 12 flavour profile
Nose: Baking spice, milk chocolate raisin, toasty oak, caramel
Palate: Raspberry, orange marmalade, toasted nuts, sherried dried fruit Sweeter notes of cereal and brown sugar.
Finish: Long, silky, with cinnamon, hazelnut praline, oily orange peel, dark chocolate.
Price: £37 / $45
Glenmorangie 12 Lasanta in more detail
This whisky hails from Northern Scotland’s Highlands region and is renowned for its complexity and depth of flavour.
Experience the wonders of a sunset in one sip! Glenmorangie’s Lasanta offers an unparalleled journey that begins with whisky distilled from our giraffe-high stills and then matured for 12 years in bourbon and sherry casks. This exquisite blend showcases a combination of delicate fruitiness, lush spiciness, and sun-drenched sweetness – all bottled up so you can enjoy its captivating flavours.
On the nose there are scents of honey, leather, sherry and ripe fruits; on the palate, there are flavours like dark chocolate, nuts, citrus zest which combine wonderfully to create an interesting yet balanced experience. The finish is long and satisfying with hints of oak tannins tying everything together nicely.
Lasanta sparkles with dried fruit, honeycomb and delicately dusted cocoa-covered hazelnuts that are illuminated by fragrant wisps of cinnamon. Similarly as to each sunset being unique; savour Lasanta for a different experience every time.
Glenlivet vs Glenfiddich vs Glenmorangie: Comparison Table
|Glenlivet vs Glenfiddich vs Glenmorangie||Glenlivet||Glenfiddich||Glenmorangie|
|Colour||Old gold, apricot||Dark gold||Light russet|
|Nose||Apricot, pineapple, greengages, citrus blossom, and toasted teacake.||Orchard fruit, malt, honey, citrus.||Baking spice, milk chocolate raisin, toasty oak, caramel.|
|Palate||Rich in vanilla and butter, bright fruit notes||Smooth, spicy, light.||Raspberry, orange marmalade, toasted nuts, sherried dried fruit. Sweeter notes of cereal and brown sugar|
|Finish||Malt, oaky spice, hint of red apple juice||Touch of oak, sweet, fruity, oily.||Long, silky, with cinnamon, hazelnut praline, oily orange peel, dark chocolate.|
|Classification||Single malt||Single malt||Single malt|
|Cask||American and European||European||Americanm|
|Price||$36 / £30||$34 / £28||$45 / £37|
The battle of the Glens was well fought: Glenlivet vs Glenfiddich vs Glenmorangie are all excellent scotch whiskies that each offer something unique. Overall I think each one is worth trying out at least once in your lifetime!
If you’re looking for something fruity then go ahead and give Glenlivet 12 a try – it won’t disappoint!
The Glenlivet 12’s smooth, creamy character and a hint of sweetness, is a great whisky for those new to single malt scotch whisky and is also a favorite of experienced whisky drinkers and a great all-around whisky for sipping neat or in cocktails.
The Glenfiddich 12 is a great whisky for any whisky enthusiast. It is known for its robust, full-bodied flavor and strong finish. The price is affordable, and it is highly rated, making it a great whisky for any occasion. I’d definitely recommend trying Glenfiddich 12, it’s the world’s most enjoyed whisky for a reason.
If you appreciate something with more depth then I’d suggest going for Glenmorangie Lasanta 12 year old. The whisky is bold and flavorful, and perfect for sipping neat or on the rocks. It is an excellent whisky that is sure to please even the most discerning whisky drinker.
The author’s favourite:
My favourite whisky is definitely Glenmorangie Lasanta 12 year old single malt scotch whisky. This exquisite spirit has been aged for 12 years in both bourbon and sherry casks, which gives it a deep and complex flavour that I find absolutely irresistible.
As someone who loves single malt Scotch whisky, I’m happy to report that Glenmorangie Lasanta 12 year stands out above many others I’ve tried before! Its unique combination of flavours and aromas make it an unforgettable experience with every sip – one that I look forward to every chance I get!
All three of these whiskies are great choices for any occasion, and each offers something special. Ultimately, the best scotch whisky for you will depend on your personal preferences.
Consider the notes, flavors, and aromas of each to decide which you prefer. Regardless of your choice, you’re in for a smooth, flavorful experience.
Why not check out our review of yet another Speyside whisky: Macallan vs Glenfiddich