The newest addition to the Glen Grant range, Glen Grant 12 was added in 2016 as a bridge between the 10 and the 18, with the Major’s Reserve forming the entrypoint to the brand.
Unfortuantely we’re again a little sparse on information here, in particular as to what makes this different to Glen Grant 10 apart from a two extra years slapped on to the minimum age. Only one way to find out!
Perhaps a tad darker than the 10. Bright gold.
This one is actually fairly layered. First up is tropical fruit – big banana and pineapple. Then there’s a new-make style fruitiness, that crisp raw spirit smell that reminds one of a strong vodka. Really nice. There’s a light mint, a little salt, some raspberries. Excellent.
Clearly a little more challenging than its (slightly) younger brother. More of what I’d consider the profile of the “Glens” – with just the right amount of Glenfiddich, Glenlivet or Glenkinchie style complexity at the 12-year-old mark. Apples and lemon, vanilla, caramel. Bourbon sweetness creeping in, but malty nevertheless. Easy to drink, in a fairly plain way. Again, no water needed!
A longer, more interesting finish overall than the 10. In fact, I’d go so far as to say this a great finisher, a slower ride with a thick malt on the tongue. Glen Grant also produce a Non-Chill Filtered variety of the 12, bottled at 48% – would love to get my hands on that to compare.
If I was forced to choose between them, I think Glen Grant 10 would steal my vote. It’s simpler, true, and criminally bottled at 40% in the rest of the world. But there is so much competition in the “apples, malt, caramel and vanilla” space that the 10 really shines as something a little more unique.
Of course the 12 remains a very competent, enjoyable drink in the style – but perhaps a little too pricey next to its big-budget and mass market rivals.