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Man, I’m tired. Even when it’s only a trip of about 70 miles round trip, it sure takes a lot out of you traveling with four kids.

I just returned from a post-Christmas dinner and gift exchange at my father-in-law’s home. We strapped the children into the van, and having secured the gifts we intended to give, I slipped a stowaway between the baggage – the GlenDronach 18 year old – assuming that it would be an acceptable gesture toward spreading a little yuletide cheer while providing something that would almost certainly be of a higher quality than what the host may have expected.

As it turns out, others were on hand to enjoy as well — my step-brother-in-law (who also happens to be the lead singer of the band Electric Six) and one of his longtime friends who was invited to stop by. While all appeared to be generally pleased with the offer and opportunity to toast a dram, not all appeared to necessarily enjoy it, that is, the immediate reviews seemed mixed at first. But in the end, as you may have already guessed, mine is the only one that matters.

Sorry you have to miss my ugly mug, but I'm taking the picture.

Sorry you have to miss my ugly mug, but I’m taking the picture.

So let’s get to it.

The nose of this edition from GlenDronach is quite fruity, more so than I expected having known a few of the sister editions. Blueberries and chocolate are the first to make their way up, through, and out of the bottle. But these being the more delicate of the edition’s delights, there is almost an immediate suggestion that the imbiber should prepare for something a little more gripping.

The palate supplies the nose’s expectations with a medium spicy malt, edges tinged by what almost seemed to be something like syrupy prebaked brownie mix with an added shot of the Oloroso sherry just before sticking it into the oven to bake.

The finish is long and warm, bringing back the blueberries as a topping for the freshly baked brownies.

Overall, the GlenDronach 18 year old is a pretty good whisky. It might not be for everyone, but as I noted above, when it’s my bottle, I’m the only one who matters.