Glenlivet Founders Reserve might be one of The Glenlivet’s entry-level expressions, but it has quite a history. It captures the essence of the first distilling efforts by the founder George Smith. It’s crafted using artisanal methods, and despite not having an age-statement, there’s a nice, aged feel to this otherwise young whiskey.
The first nose is fresh and youthful, reminiscent of citrus peels, sweet oranges and lemons, followed by honeyed apples and vanilla custard hints. There’s American oak in this one, leading to delicate brown spices and just a few whiffs of charred smoke.
Without being cloying or overly complicated, the Founder’s Reserve palate is all about texture, with a creaminess and a syrupy mid-palate carrying a three-note chord or fresh fruit, honey and vanilla.
The finish has a medium length. After all, this is a young expression, but the citrus freshness does extend long into the finish, where it mingles with the oaky vanilla to leave a unique lemon curd aftertaste that’s pretty pleasing.
Sip or skip?
Traditionalists might not consider whiskeys with no age-statement to be taken into consideration, but the Founder’s Reserve is a great effort; it has an authentic personality that might portray The Glenlivet’s signature style even better than the distillery’s 12-Year-Old. For a pleasing expression that won’t break the bank, the Founder’s Reserve is a fantastic value. An expression perfect for every-day enjoyment.
Other Glenlivet expressions to try
The Glenlivet 12-Year-Old is a more mature and robust expression that follows the Founder’s Reserve in complexity. Lively and fresh, but with more spices and a more robust palate, if you enjoy the Founder’s Reserve, you’ll love the 12-Year-Old.