The first time I tasted Glenfarclas was the Family Cask brought to me by the Doc. It was rich, deep, and wonderfully sweet. It was last summer, during a period when I couldn’t bring myself to drink smoky whisky as usual, and the Glenfarclas landed perfectly for me. A summer whisky, with the right lightness and sweetness to sit just right. It was exactly what I was looking for.

The next Glenfarclas I tasted was at the Whisky Show in London last year. It was on the last day of the show when I was trying to catch up on everything I missed in the previous two days. The Glenfarclas I tried was none other than the 30-year-old. I wasn’t blown away; it was very nice, but it didn’t recreate that Family Cask moment.

Some time passed, and I decided that the best whisky to end every Prohibition tour with is the Glenfarclas 10—a solid, pleasant, slightly sweet (but not too much), and elegant whisky. I end the tour at a bar in New York that Max introduced me to about a year ago and which I now visit regularly. On the day I did my final rehearsal for the tour, I finished my day with the 15 and 17. Suddenly, something shifted again—I really, really liked both. There was a bit more depth and a calculated sweetness. I think I even liked the 15 a bit more, and I remember Tomo telling me there’s a difference between the 15 and the 10+17, rooted in the cask. While the 10+17 are finished in sherry, the 15 spent its entire life in sherry casks.

The next time I arrived with a tour at the mentioned bar, Tomo the bartender had prepared a special Glenfarclas trio for me—21, 25, and the one I longed for the most, the 105 Cask Strength. Here, I could truly say I created a sort of commitment, and after every tour on Saturday, a glass of the 25 awaited me at Tomo’s. Until the bottle ran out (I swear it wasn’t me who finished it!).

Then came a special and eagerly awaited bottle from Israel. A gift from Omer. G

Cask strength. Wow! Not the Glenfarclas you expected! Like the 105 that I loved very much, here too, the sweetness, caramel, and banana come with full force, just the way I like it. I didn’t expect this character and presence compared to the vanilla—both literally and metaphorically—of the 10, 15, and 17.

The next was a uniquely special experience. Again Tomo, again the same cool bar in Manhattan. And this time—a Cadenhead’s from a Speyside distillery. Tomo tells me, ‘This is Glenfarclas’ (he had just returned from Springbank School with a bunch of gifts), and at that moment, I saw the light. It’s known that I struggle greatly with identifying flavors, but here, every flavor was distinct and clear— butter, butterscotch, banana on a biscuit with maple syrup. I didn’t feel comfortable asking for more, but if I could, I would have grabbed the bottle and gotten married in Vegas! With Elvis officiating, of course!

The finish was gentle, as it should be, with a sweet gift brought to me by Yuri on his last visit. A tiny bottle of Glenfarclas 12. Simple, tasty, and sweet—what you see is what you get. I love it just as much as I love surprises.

It fascinates me that a relatively standard distillery has become so captivating to me. On one hand, expressions that everyone on my Prohibition tours loves, from beginners to advanced cask strength enthusiasts. On the other hand, there are such brilliant surprises like the Cadenhead’s, the Family Cask, the G. Versatility meets standard. A wild lover versus the best and most stable thing that’s happened to you. I guess you need both.

And thanks to everyone who introduced me to a piece of this Glenfarclas puzzle.

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