£20 Glen Marnoch Speyside single malt from Aldi wins top whisky award

One of Aldi’s single malt whiskies has been awarded a a coveted Scotch Whisky ‘Master’ award in this year's Scotch Whisky Master Awards.

Published 15th Oct 2020
Updated 21 st Sep 2023

Priced at £20.99 (70cl; 40% ABV) the Aldi Glen Marnoch 12 Year Old represents excellent value for money, and beat off a host of more expensive Scotch Single Malts to top its category in the prestigious awards.

It joins the ranks of other Masters winners, which includes the likes of Johnnie Walker Blue Label which retails at £139 - nearly seven times the Aldi whisky price.

The Scotch Whisky Masters Awards are run by drinks industry title The Spirits Business, with judges scoring the whiskies entered through a series of blind tastings.

Graham Nicolson, group buying director, Aldi Scotland said: “We’re very proud that our Glen Marnoch 12 Year Old Speyside Single Malt has been recognised as one of the top whiskies in this years’ Scotch Whisky Masters.

"Our customers know that when they shop at Aldi they can trust they will be getting the highest quality Scottish products at the very best prices, and we’ll certainly be raising a dram to celebrate this latest success.”

In addition, Aldi also scooped three further Gold awards for its Highland Black 8 Year Old Scotch Whisky, Glen Marnoch Highland Single Malt Scotch Whisky and Glen Marnoch Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky, and a Silver award for its Glen Marnoch Islay Single Malt Whisky.

The competition

Aldi Glen Marnoch

The competition was judged virtually this year by Melita Kiely, Editor, The Drinks Business, alongside Matt Chambers and Karen Taylor, co-founders of the Whisky for Everyone blog.

Melita Kiely, editor of The Spirits Business magazine, and chair of The Global Spirits Masters, said: "Aldi's Glen Marnoch 12-year-old was a fantastic example of a quality Speyside single malt whisky.

"The judges thoroughly enjoyed sweeter notes of caramel and chocolate, which were balanced with some spicier, drier flavours. It proved you can find brilliant whiskies at affordable price points."

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The Glen Marnoch 12 Year Old Speyside Single Malt is matured for twelve years in hand-crafted American Oak casks.

On the nose it has a rich, malty aroma with biscuit sweetness, notes of fresh fruit and a delicate leafy character balanced with vanilla sweetness.

On the palate it delivers a sweet, rounded vanilla oakiness with malty characteristics and subtle notes of caramelised fruits with a mellow long-lasting finish.

The Scotch Whisky Masters assess drams spanning all regions, varieties, ages and prices on the quality of the liquid alone.

Lidl's Ben Bracken Speyside Single Malt scooped a gold award, and was described as “soft and sweet”  by judges.

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Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne, whisky and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind is the Food and Drink Editor and whisky writer for The Scotsman, as well as hosting Scran, The Scotsman's food and drink podcast.
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