Adelphi (distilled at Glenlivet) 1978 34 year old, 48.8%

Price: $160 Issue: Winter 2011 Reviewer: Dave Broom

Think of sponge fingers soaked in cream and you're not far off the initial aroma. Add in light macadamia-like nuttiness, a drift of mint, and Glenlivet's signature apple — core, not green. As it opens, it becomes woodier, like a brush pile. The palate has sweet, pure, pear-like fruit that initially keeps the oak in balance. It seems to need water, but when it's added the oak takes over. Good, but a little tired. £102