Glen Spey is a little-known Diageo-owned workhorse distillery in Rothes, Speyside (the town is also home to Glen Grant, Caperdonich, Glenrothes and Speyburn). The distillery was founded in 1878 by James Stuart, who sold it shortly after buying Macallan eight years later. The buyers, W&A Gilbey (more famous for their gin), were the first English company to own a Scottish distillery.
Gilbey rebuilt Glen Spey after a fire in 1920 and shepherded the distillery through the Prohibition era and WWII, before merging with United Wine Traders to form International Distillers and Vintners (IDV), a forerunner to (and one of the key whisky-distilling elements of) what would become today's globe-straddling drinks behemoth Diageo plc.
Glen Spey had its stills doubled to four in 1970, two years before IDV was bought by Watney Mann (who were later bought by Grand Metroplitan, who merged with Guinness to form Diageo in 1997).
Almost all of Glen Spey's 1.3million litres/year output goes into the J&B blended whisky. The 12yo Flora & Fauna bottling is the only official release available, and independent bottlings are rare.
Glen Spey 21 Year Old is a rare Glen Spey official bottling that was part of Diageo's 2010 special releases. It was aged partly in first-fill, partly in ex-Sherry American oak casks. A total of 5,844 bottles were produced.
Glen Spey 21 Year Old is one of the best of the bunch of Diageo's 2010 special releases, this 21 year old has bags of fresh fruit. We got Strawberries, Pineapple and Orange. Touch of Almond Oil on the finish.