Glen Scotia distillery is situated in Campbeltown, near the southern tip of the Kintyre peninsula on Scotland’s western coast.
At one time this seemingly remote settlement boasted more than twenty distilleries, ideally placed as it was for the North American trade markets. Glen Scotia opened in 1832 and was well established by the time the industry reached its peak in the late 19th century. In the end, Scotia was the only distillery to survive the inevitable crash alongside Springbank.
Exactly what brought about the downfall of the whisky city isn’t entirely certain, though it seems likely that a combination of shoddy distilling practices and enhanced competition from the rise of the Speyside whiskies, coupled with the introduction of prohibition in the US left Campbeltown’s many distillers struggling to make ends meet.
Today Glen Scotia is owned by the Loch Lomond Group, who oversaw a complete relaunch of the brand with an entirely new core range comprising of the Double Cask, the 15 Year Old and the Victoriana.
The Victoriana is an attempt by Glen Scotia’s distillers to recreate a traditional Campbeltown malt, the likes of which brought such huge success to the region in the first place. Bottled at 51.5%, it is available in the UK for around £80.
Smell: Brine and Sea Salt, Honey and Vanilla, Fudge, Biscuit and Bread with creamy Malt.
Taste: Sea Salt and Cracked Black Pepper, Vanilla Fudge, Brine, Oak, Malty Biscuit and Cereal and a faint hint of Smoke.
Value for Money: Another great dram from Scotia… Granted, an age statement would be nice at this price point but it is a dram of exquisite quality nonetheless.
Scores: 46 / 50.
Glen Scotia can do very little wrong in the eyes of this reviewer. The distillery itself is a hidden gem tucked away in the south-west corner of Scotland, and the Victoriana is yet another example of the fine malt it produces – rich in character and bold in flavour. Great stuff.