Whisky Advocate

New Glenmorangie “Finealta”

August 25th, 2010

I assume this is the follow-up to Sonnalta PX, which I liked.

This one sounds very exciting. It is available only in Travel Retail (for now). Details below.


Glenmorangie reveals the newest addition to its Private Edition range with GLENMORANGIE FINEALTA

The Glenmorangie Company announces the release of Glenmorangie Finealta, the latest addition to the Private Editionrange of limited edition expressions by Glenmorangie’s award-winning Whisky Creators. Finealta, pronounced ‘Finalta’, is Scottish Gaelic for ‘elegant’. It is an exquisite recreation of Glenmorangie based on a recipe dating back to 1903.

The century-old recipe was uncovered in the Distillery’s archives. Dr Bill Lumsden, Head of Distilling and Whisky Creation, comments, ‘Glenmorangie decided to recreate this recipe so that we, and whisky connoisseurs, could have a taste of this historic Glenmorangie expression. We followed the recipe meticulously, which included marrying whiskies of different ages and different cask types. The final result is a whisky of such depth and distinction that we selected it as the second release in Glenmorangie’s exclusive Private Edition.’

Whisky aficionados will delight in Glenmorangie Finealta’s distinctive vanilla and citrus notes that one expects in a Glenmorangie expression, while enjoying Finealta’s unique rich taste of mandarin segments, lime and hints of cherry brandy combined with a spicy palate of nutmeg and ginger. The final touch is a surprising one – a hint of peat creating a subtle smokiness with layers of gentle floral scents and depth to discover. The light touch of peatiness originates in an era when the Glenmorangie Distillery dried its malted barley in a peat-fired kiln.

Distillery archives show that during the early 1900’s this Glenmorangie dram was served in the American Bar of The Savoy, London’s most prestigious hotel, during La Belle Époque and at the height of Art Nouveau, the first modern art movement of the 20thcentury. The packaging design for Glenmorangie Finealta is inspired by Art Nouveau, which had a style for incorporating elements of nature such as floral and plant motifs into artwork, architecture and home furnishings.

Daniel Baerntuther, Manager of the American Bar at The Savoy, says, ‘We are very excited with the creation of Glenmorangie Finealta, which was first enjoyed by The Savoy’s guests at the turn of the 20thcentury. It is wonderful that the introduction coincides with The Savoy’s reopening on 10.10.10 as this will allow our new guests to also experience this special Glenmorangie expression. In restoring The Savoy, we have been careful to preserve the atmosphere, elegance and unashamedly old-fashioned glamour of the hotel and Glenmorangie Finealta fits perfectly.”

The popularity of Glenmorangie single malt whisky grew beyond Scotland during the early 1900’s when it was shipped around the world to whisky enthusiasts spanning America to Asia.

Bottled at a strength of 46% ABV, and non chill-filtered to impart a full body and texture, Glenmorangie Finealta will be made available to global travel retail in early September.

25 Responses to “New Glenmorangie “Finealta””

  1. Sam says:

    Sounds interesting but “available only in travel retail”. I’m not sure if I don’t know something other people do but why do companies do this? For someone like me who never travels internationally anymore (and doesn’t know anyone who does regularly) how can we get whiskies which are limited to travel retail? There must be some reason for companies limiting their product distribution this way but why? If I’m not mistaken some US whiskies have also been limited to travel retail and this all seems to be an accepted part of the business but one which I don’t understand.

  2. Someone in the business explained it to me this way. The travel retail market insists on whiskies that aren’t available in local stores, except for the standard expressions like JW Black, etc. Also, since there are only a few key accounts to deal with, it’s a lot easier to release a small batch of bottles through travel retail instead of dealing with importers in dozens of countries and allocating a few to each. Also, more specifically to the Finealta, remember that Glenmorangie started the Sonnalta PX in travel retail for a year or two, then brought it into the U.S. Travel retail can also be a test market to see how well a whisky sells before expanding distribution.

    • two-bit cowboy says:

      All well and good, Mark, but then LVMH’s marketing gurus ought not capitalize on the verbiage in the second to last paragraph of their press release. Seems hypocritical to brag about copying an early 1900s recipe, remind us that Glenmorangie enjoyed worldwide aclaim back then, but tell us if we don’t fly to the world’s largest airports today we’re out of luck for this one.

      • John Hansell says:

        two-bit: I can confirm what Mark said. If you are patient, you might get the opportunity to purchase it here in the U.S. early in 2011.

        I am seeing a pattern here where they launch these range of whiskies in Travel Retail first, and then eventually bring them into the U.S.

        Incidentally, I am getting a review sample soon, so I’ll let you know what I think after I taste it.

      • George Jetson says:

        I guess I’ll not reply then to John’s inquiry about the JW Double Black which I had the pleasure to try and buy at O’Hare and Frankfurt duty free lately. Ditto the JW Gold XR from Pu Dong duty free, no need to whip people into a frenzy about exclusive whiskies.

      • John Hansell says:

        My review bottle is 750 ml size, so that it encouraging that we will see it soon enough here in the US.

  3. Ease up, cowboy…the release only says it’ll debut in travel retail in September. A very well-placed source tells me the US will get it in regular release after the holidays.

  4. David says:

    Glenmorangie Finealta will be launched in US domestic market in early 2011

  5. Henry H. says:

    You have to love a product range called “Private Edition” that is nonetheless released for public sale. Of course, there’s a long history of such misnomers in the marketing world. Do they actually believe we’re led around by the misleading suggestion that a product is – or has been until this magical moment – just out of our reach? Must work on some niche to some degree, eh? Come to think of it, maybe the initial Travel Retail-only release is part of the same marketing strategy.
    Ah well, let’s hope the whisky is good…

  6. Mister X says:

    Sonnalta was released in Feb of last year.

    I would anticipate Finealta being released in Feb 2011.

    It sounds interesting

  7. MrTH says:

    There are many whiskies exclusive to various markets where I cannot get at them. I honestly can’t see getting all bent out of shape over it. There’s plenty else around to try.

    • Steffen Bräuner says:

      I agree with Mr. TH

      Personal I am alot more “worried” I have a hard time getting bottlings from German, Dutch and Belgian IB than travel retail bottlings 🙂


  8. John says:

    When will the Glenmorangie Hullabaloo being launched on the private market?

    When Ardbeg does something like this, there seems to be more charm about it. Maybe because it’s tongue in cheek. Slick marketing still.

    I suppose if it tastes nice, that’s the main thing.


  9. kallaskander says:

    Hi there,

    never fear here in Germany the period of restriction for “travel retail exclusive ” whiskies is never very long. After all they want to sell their whiskies.

    See what they did to the Highland Park 21yo travel exclusive. The need to water it down to get more yield did not stem from the travel exclusive sales. And TRE bottlings being normaly 1.0 litres, the HP was bottled in 0.75 or 0.7 litre bottles from the begining.

    As to marketing – again… What better name for a series you want the masses to buy than “Private Collection aka Release aka Reserve aka you name it”?


  10. John says:

    One of my favourite names is the Jameson Rarest Vintage Reserve… Silly name, but it tastes nice.


  11. I hope it’ll come into market in regular bottles. Those 1 litres are good value, but they are soooo ugly… They are just way too bulky to fit nicely on my shelf 🙂
    But anyway, I’m not too scared about TRE. They’ll eventually be available everywhere, or you or someone you know will fly and be able to snatch one up for you. Worked for me thusfar…

  12. DavidG says:

    Serge just reviewed it today –

  13. […] hoop ik dat Glenmorangie de Finealta meeneemt, ondanks dat deze alleen nog in Travel Retail te krijgen is, en nog niet in de normale […]

  14. Stuart says:

    I work for the company that will distribute this product. In our meeting last week they intoduced the new Glenmorainge which tasted great. Look for it to starting hitting key independents in Feburary.

  15. Ely says:

    if anyone notices it in any shops in nyc or northern nj please comment… thanks!

  16. says:

    Glenmorangie Finealta is now available in Germany and the Netherlands. Looking forward to taste it.
    I have seen it in UK, but at a much higher price…

  17. Jon Bauer says:

    I work for a liquor/wine retailer in upstate NY. As of 3/16/11 we have our allocation of 3 bottles. Oops, only 2 left on the shelf as I write this on the 19th.

  18. Shawn L says:

    Picked up a bottle at Changi Airport (Singapore) en route out to the UK.

    Haven’t opened it yet…sounds like it could be good!

  19. DramOfScotch says:

    What a tasty dram and even more of an interesting finish. I was able to purchase this at Binny’s in Chicago the other day. Great review John!

    See here for my review on it:

© Copyright 2017. Whisky Advocate. All rights reserved.