Branch On Fire: Glenfiddich Fire & Cane

Glenfiddich is one of the most established makers of Scotch out there. They have been doing single malts for a long, long time and are the biggest seller of single malts out there. They are known for the sweeter side of scotch, from the Speyside. Fire & Cane, however, is one of their new offerings, an experimental whiskey.

Fire & Cane takes their rare peated single malt and combines the fruit-forward Speyside, making it “half-peated”. Peated Glenfiddich was previously hard to find, mostly in duty-free stores. Both are aged in ex bourbon barrels. The “Cane” comes from the cask finishing in ex rum casks for three months.

Fire & Cane is a lower proof whiskey at 86 proof. It pours a gold amber. I have seen others say they can smell the smoke (peat) on the nose. I can not. I’m not sure if it is from drinking peatier whiskeys more frequently or just an individual nose thing, but I don’t smell much of the smoke. I don’t get much on the tongue during the taste either. What I do get is that toffee sweetness and orange peel from the rum finish. The taste is more cane than fire.

The smoke comes in on the finish for me, though. That first breath out after the swallow is where I notice the peat. So if we were going chronologically, this should probably be named Cane & Fire.

Fire & Cane sits in a niche market within whiskey. While it has done well for the experimental series Glenfiddich is doing, the audience is still probably limited. Peat seekers are going to bypass it. Regular bourbon drinkers will as well. The former for lack of smoke, the later for too much. As an equal opportunist whiskey drinker, I rather like it. It’s a small niche, but one I happen to sit in. I would guess I rate this a few points higher than most would. It sits in a simlar market to the American counterpart from High West, Campfire. I like it slightly better than that offering.

Rating: 91

Whiskey Ratings

93: Lagavulin 11 Offerman Edition
92: Jefferson’s Reserve Very Old
91–George Remus 2020 Cask Strength A1 pick, Glenfiddich Fire & Cane
90: High West Campfire, Few Rye, Knob Creek Small Batch 100
89: Old Forester Rye
88: Buffalo Trace, Oban Night’s Watch
87: Breckenridge Bourbon
85: Wolfburn Aurora
83: Buchanan’s Deluxe 12

Gin Ratings

88: Dogfish Head Compelling Gin

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