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Glenlivet 15 vs Glenfiddich 15: Head to Head!

Discover the differences between Glenlivet 15 vs Glenfiddich 15 in this in-depth comparison and decide which is better for You!

Glenlivet 15 French Oak Reserve

glenlivet-15
  • Nose: Vanilla, orange peel, caramel.
  • Palate: Nutty flavor, with butterscotch, vanilla, oak spice.
  • Finish: Long, oak, almond.

The Glenlivet 15 offers a nice sweet aroma with hints of vanilla and caramel, along a bit of citrus peel.

On the mouth it feels creamy providing a good mouthfeel. Flavor is smooth and rich in caramel and vanilla, with a noticeable nutty hint and a pleasant hit of oak spice, with nothing overwhelming or off-putting.

The finish is where this malt shines as it has smooth and lingering flavors with some nice oak and spicy hints and pleasing warmth on the tail.

The Glenlivet 15 offers good value within the Glenlivet family as it is an improvement over its 12 YO and is even better than the 18YO.

Those two are overly smooth but quite boring, frankly. The 15 YO is a smooth and yet flavorful malt, striking a nice balance between spicy and sweet notes and a bit of warmth on the tail that sits well.

This whisky would be even better if it had a higher proof but Glenlivet like to water-down its malts a bit.

The Glenlivet 15 is first aged for 12 years in ex-bourbon barrels and for 3 years in French Limousin Oak. Those with expertise in casks ensure that the large-grain and tannic wood of these barrels “ensures a clear color and an impressive expression in all spirits”.

Learn how it compares to the Glenlivet 14!

There are a few facts worth knowing about the Glenlivet 15:

  • Bottled at 80 proof (40% ABV).

  • Glenlivet is the best-selling single malt whisky in the United States and second globally behind Glenfiddich.

  • The distillery was founded in 1824 is currently owned by Pernod Ricard from France who also owns Chivas Regal among several other brands.

Glenfiddich 15 Solera Reserve

glenfiddich-15-solera-reserve
  • Nose: Sherry, orange, oak.
  • Palate: Sherry, orange, cinnamon, ginger and oak.
  • Finish: Oak spice, sherry.

The nose is high in sherry aroma up-front, followed by hints of orange and subtle oak.

On the palate, Glenfiddich 15 has a decent body without being creamy or watery. Flavor is mostly sherry and light orange, followed by hints of ginger and oak.

The finish is medium-length bringing some oak spice, yet nothing severe and more sherry which is the common theme from nose to finish.

Glenfiddich 15 is a nice and smooth, perhaps a little too smooth, sweet malt, with a strong sherry and orange note.

This is not the richest whisky but it is an easy drinker, with hardly any burn at a great price offering good value for the money.

If you feel spicy notes on the finish add a few drops of water. Just two or three drops are enough to tune it down and make it sweeter.

Overall, Glenfiddich 15 is a straight up sherried Scotch, neither bad nor great at a very attractive price making a good candidate for an everyday Scotch.

What makes this whisky interesting is that it was aged in three different types of casks: ex bourbon, ex-sherry, and new virgin American oak.

The whisky is then vatted into a Solera System similar to those used for the aging of Sherry wine. Once aged the whisky is married for a further period in Portuguese oak tuns to achieve consistency.

Learn how it compares to the Macallan 12 Sherry Oak!

There are a few facts worth knowing about this whisky:

  • Bottled at 80 proof (40% ABV).

  • Glenfiddich is a Speyside single malt Scotch whisky produced by William Grant & Sons in Moray.

  • Glenfiddich means “valley of the deer” in Gaelic, which is reflected in Glenfiddich’s stag logo.

  • The Glenfiddich Distillery was founded in 1886 by William Grant and the first whisky saw the light on Christmas Day 1887.

Glenlivet 15 vs Glenfiddich 15: Price comparison

Prices are approximate and stated in USD:

WhiskyPrice
Glenlivet 15$83
Glenfiddich 15 Solera Reserve$80

Glenlivet 15 vs Glenfiddich 15: Which is better?

The Glenlivet 15 is a more rewarding whisky

WhiskeyGlenlivet 15Glenfiddich 15
Nose
Body
Palate
Finish
Value
  • The Glenlivet 15 is more interesting and flavorful than the Glenfiddich and yet quite smooth making a better dram. Its rich and although not overly complex it has some nice tasting notes and is pleasantly warm making a good sip.

  • The Glenfiddich 15 offers good value for the money, nothing to write home about but an easy sherried whisky at an unbeatable price for a 15 YO.

Consider further options reading my post with the best 15 year old whiskies and bourbons!

What do Glenlivet and Glenfiddich have in common?

Both whiskies are crafted in Speyside. This is the most densely populated Whisky region in the world. Speyside whiskies are renowned for their creamy and fruity flavors along low peat smoke content. Apple, pear, honey, vanilla and spice all have a part a role in expressions from this region, which are commonly matured in Sherry casks.

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