Glenfiddich 15 “Solera Reserve” Review

There are some disturbingly silly whisky descriptors out there. For example, I have read in more than a few reviews the aroma/taste of “wet rock.” What’s even more silly is that I have tried since then to smell wet rocks when I find them. Sometimes I get something, most other times I don’t. But at the end of the day, a wet rock is just plain silly. The silliness goes even further: descriptors could be actual common aromas but are coupled with over the top subjective embellishments (luscious pomegranate in a clay pot after a week’s travels through the desert, or something). But one term in particular, odd at first, but at present is a common staple in our reviews, is a term called “drinkability.” In short, this quality is for a sip that goes down without distraction or much distracting contemplation. It’s not indicative of complexity or overall quality and has little to do with smoothness, but rather it refers to the lack of offensive or conspicuous traits when one swallows a sample. And obviously, it also refers to the fact that the whisky bottle will be drained in a rapid fashion.

One of the most drinkable whiskies in the world is Glenfiddich 15, formerly “Solera Reserve.” This Speyside single malt is a gentle but flavorful bottling that we consider our favorite of the entire line. Per the title this malt utilizes a Spanish solera vatting technique that adds additional depth and softness. This process introduces 70% refill bourbon, 20% sherry oak and 10% virgin oak aged 15 years into a 700L Oregon pine solera vat for a marrying period of about 3 to 6 months. Afterwards, 50% of the vat is dumped, and the process begins again. It is bottled at 40% ABV. Now, onto our review of the result…


SWC Group Review


Nose- Rich honey and vanilla/caramel. Nice grain/fresh bakery notes. Well balanced and soft.

Taste- Well rounded mouthfeel. Vanilla, creamy sweetness. Faint citrus with some nice oak.

Finish- Burst of honeyed sweetness. Medium length. Dried citrus with a slight dry ending with tobacco.

Comments- A well balanced and delicious, drinkable malt. Pleasantries all around. Simple nature but the flavors are satisfying. Recommended go-to bottle.

SWC Rating – 87/100

Avg. Retail – $45.00


Agree? Disagree? Let us know in the comments sections below.


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5 thoughts on “Glenfiddich 15 “Solera Reserve” Review

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  2. Interesting. I always thought “drinkability” referred to how tempting it is to refill your glass and keep going. Or how often a particular bottle calls to you from the cupboard.

    Anyways, on the subject of “disturbing silly descriptors”, that’s something I’ve marvelled at since I started to get more interested in whisky, and I’ve written a couple of pieces about them in the past. To be fair, it was a while ago and there’s probably more than a touch of naivete about them, but if you feel like checking them out:

    Nice blog. Cheers.


    1. Drinkability seems to be a general term with numerous qualities. But a whisky sure does fit well in a cabinet when it’s “drinkable.”

      I like your realist style. Serious whisky tasting is legit, but we try to keep as much of the silliness out of it as we can. When it comes to reviews, just eat the meat and spit out the bones.


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