The Glenrothes press luncheon held The Parish LA —a quaint gastropub in the V-shaped wedge of the converging Spring and Main streets in downtown Los Angeles—was a homage to The Glenrothes forthcoming 1998, 1988, and 1978 vintage whiskys.
At the heart of Los Angeles’ thriving craft cocktail scene, Chef Casey Lane’s The Parish is a classy pub decorated by dark wood accents and dark floral wallpaper beside exposed brick and hanging vintage portraits. The Glenrothes selected this fine establishment to kickoff their vintage whisky line, which were served alongside complementing plates from The Parish’s breakfast and dinner selections.
Established in 1879, The Glenrothes has long been revered as an award-winning whiskey brand, with only 2% of the annual production becoming The Glenrothes single malt scotch whisky. The company is known for their vintage brands, which are borne from carefully selected casks at the peak of maturation.
We started the afternoon with a Scotch Lace, a reinvention of the whisky sour using the Select Reserve. With a hint of tart, the drink invigorated the senses with a bite of lemon in preparation for the tasting ahead.
After mingling with one another, we were asked to seat ourselves in small groups on plush chairs in a small but elegant upstairs dining area where the chatter slowly dimmed as Ronnie Cox, Global Brands Heritage Director for The Glenrothes, led a discussion on the moods and complex flavors of the vintage whiskeys.
The Glenrothes 1998 came first; it was a fragrant whiskey of honey and creamy vanilla to be enjoyed over conversation. It is a welcoming, stimulating whisky that runs smooth and leaves the tongue tingling with a plethora of flavors. Unlike many whiskys, which are artificially colored, the ‘98 vintage is naturally colored light amber.
Served with beets mache herbs over molasses yogurt; grilled corn with honeycomb butter; butter lettuce; and a wood-grilled bone marrow with celery salad, the ‘98 was complemented by a small helping of fats to be followed by the sweet corn and lightness of the butter corn and molasses yogurt.
On its heels was The Glenrothes 1988, a bright gold whiskey with a hint of slice orange peel in its fruit compote flavor. It was served with delicately cooked clams in a light sherry dressing with salumi picante, leeks, and peas. A crunchy fried chicken with grilled peaches and a currant vinaigrette rounded out the flavors of the long, medium-sweet finish of the ‘98.
However, it was The Glenrothes 1978 whisky that many awaited in palpable anticipation. This vintage was a light copper whiskey with rich flavors of dark honey, citrus, and vanilla. To match its fruity flavors, we were served a dulce de leche pudding over fig jam shortbread. While the whisky glided down the palate and settled warmly in the gut, the shortbread accented it with its sweet density. Ronnie Cox described the 1978 as a “delicious dram” that eases and warms you; a drink that settles on the palate and coaxes you.
Representing the pinnacle of the 1970s, the highly cherished Glenrothes ‘78 is crafted from the finest malted barley and Highland spring water. Bottled in January 2008, it is comprised of a small selection of casks handpicked by Malt Master John Ramsay. Packaged in a copper and oak frame to reflect its maturation and distillation, The Glenrothes 1978 is a classy, top-shelf whisky. It will be released in September in a limited run.
You can find The Glenrothes at fine liquor retailers, restaurants, and bars nationwide. In Los Angeles, you can find them at The Parish, Seven Grand, The Rosewood, and Eveleigh. For those looking to take a bottle home, check out your local BevMo in the coming weeks.
We will not sell or distribute your e-mail address to anyone else.
Written by michael galvis