Glenfiddich’s Time Re:Imagined collection is proof that time really is the ultimate luxury in three extraordinary aged whiskies
Once again, Glenfiddich moves squarely into the ultra-rare, luxury whisky space with the launch of the Time Re:Imagined collection, the latest release from family-owned distiller and distributor William Grant & Sons. The release consists of three extraordinary aged whiskies – 30-, 40- and 50-year-old expressions – each representing the pinnacle of the brand’s signature distillery style. The rare whiskies, which are among some of the oldest released by Glenfiddich, are designed to be luxury collectibles and are available at since1887.sg. Each of the expressions is presented in a different bespoke casing inspired by the passage of time.
“William Grant, the visionary founder of Glenfiddich, had a dream to create the best dram in the valley,” reveals Claudia Falcone, Glenfiddich’s global brand director. “These three expressions are the perfect illustration of that aspiration. The Time Re:Imagined collection bottles pay tribute to that maverick spirit and capture a fleeting moment in time that bridges the past with the present. The quality of these liquids has inspired the distinctive packaging which beautifully tells the stories of these single malts and is a fitting tribute to the unpredictable nature of time itself.”
Time, a vital ingredient in the art of whisky making, forms the foundation of the collection. Each expression is an exploration of different facets of time and an ode to the three master distillers at the helm: Hamish Robertson (1960 to 1974), David Stewart (1974 to 2008) and Brian Kinsman (2008 to the present day). “Since 1960, there have been three malt masters and it is our job to say when the whisky is ready. When people talk about whisky production they think about the formalities, but not the history, of the cask, the weather that has shaped the taste of each barrel. Time is the biggest ingredient. Glenfiddich’s Time Re:Imagined pays homage to the role of time within the process and the rare and exceptional liquids that it helps create,” says Glenfiddich malt master, Brian Kinsman.
With the launch of this capsule, the Speyside distillery has created a new touchstone of luxury whisky. The rarest and undoubtedly most sought- after is the 50-year-old Simultaneous Time, with only 220 decanters available globally. It is made with whiskies from three different American oak refill casks, all matured in the same warehouse before being married together and finished in an American oak refill cask for two years. Time really is the ultimate luxury here; the antique gold liquid marks every moment of all the events, people and occurrences over a unique 50-year span of time that is unrepeatable and unforgettable.
“When we decide the 50-year-old whisky casks are ready, it is more about letting the distillery shine through. I am looking for the casks that have more of the fruitiness than you would expect. It is fresh and sweet, less oaky,” says Kinsman. A privileged few will discover “the taste of rich orange peel and clementine meeting the complete notes of Madeira cake and muscovado sugar. It has a lingering sweetness that softens into a deep, silky smooth oak tannin, giving you an overall taste that is more fruity, fresh and sweet than you would expect,” adds Kinsman.
No effort is spared with the making of the packaging either. Designed by computational architect Manuel Jiménez Garcia, the sculptural casing was made by decrypting 50 years of climatic data (humidity, temperature and air pressure), taken from the precise location where the whisky was aged at Glenfiddich’s Dufftown distillery, to create bespoke digital maps, then forming the cylindrical shape of the glorifier. The fruits of the labour is a dramatic bespoke 3D case made entirely out of aluminium.
The 40-year-old Cumulative Time celebrates the effects of time made physical, with layers of flavour that cumulate over time. It celebrates evolution with one thing building on another, a maverick representation of the distillery’s pioneering remnant vatting. This is a process where remnants from past batches are carried over and married with the casks selected for each subsequent release. Glenfiddich is the only distillery to use the remnant vatting process, and the accumulation of flavours over the years lend depth and complexity to the rich liquid. As Kinsman describes: “The dark mahogany colour of this 40-year-old whisky hides the layered tastes of dried fruits, dark chocolate and ripe black cherries. It is a decadent, intense drink that is both oily and luxurious in the mouth. It has a little something of past whiskies, including the taste of dates and raisins coupled with the sherry character of the cask it has been in for four decades.”
The stunning packaging, reflecting the whisky’s layered flavours, is a creative interpretation of geological metamorphosis. The iconic three-sided decanter is encased in a jesmonite cylinder with carved-out windows. The innovative marble-like material means that every piece is different and unique from the next. Only 1,600 bottles of the 40-year-old are released worldwide.
And then there is the 30-year-old Suspended Time, which marks the weight of a particular moment in time, showcasing the malt master’s definitive decision to bottle. On the nose, you’ll find an exquisitely structured balance of hearty oak with subtle sherry notes. On the palate, Kinsman says: “The 30-year-old has a rich, bronze colour to it with a taste that has deep, woody flavours combined with delicate floral accents that last for a long time in the mouth. It is like a deep rich Christmas cake, with a lovely syrupy fruitiness.” This expression comes in a case of swirling aluminium ribbons, creating the dynamic illusion that the bottle is suspended within.
“In whisky production, we often talk about the role of malt masters and it is our responsibility to find the delicate balance between the taste of the whisky and the intensity of the oak cask. But we don’t always acknowledge how each cask, each bottle, is absolutely unique because of the time it has spent maturing. Both nature and time play huge roles in making whisky taste like it does and Glenfiddich’s Time Re:Imagined pays homage to this process and the exquisite liquid it helps to create,” explains Kinsman.