Review: BenRiach 21yo Tawny Port

benriach 21 year old tawny portBenRiach 21yo Tawny Port – 46% abv

Info: Matured in American bourbon barrels and then finished in Tawny Port casks sourced from the Douro region in the north of Portugal. Replaces the 15YO Tawny Port finish. Bottled at 46% vol.
Colour: Late summer setting sun gold, slight red tints.
Nose: Meaty, punchy, and fruity. Also damp wood and dunnage floors. A (vanilla) creaminess soon comes out.
Palate: Nice and smooth, easily introduced to your tongue with fairly thick oils. You naturally want to hold this on your tongue for a long time, and after a while slight smoky hints come out, possibly from the cask char. It’s not overly sweet, but instead a temptingly balanced sweetness, with a hint of cream to keep it in balance. It’s fairly easy on the spices and wood tannins.
Continue reading

Review: BenRiach 17yo Pedro Ximénez

benriach 17 year old pedro ximenezBenRiach 17yo Pedro Ximénez – 46% abv

Info: Matured in American bourbon barrels, and finished in Pedro Ximenez Sherry casks sourced from the bodegas of Jerez de la Frontera in Andalucia, Southern Spain. This replaces the renowned 15YO expression. Bottled at 46%.
Colour: Rich, dark golden autumnal gold.
Nose: More than anything you can smell the punchy PX sherry notes, autumn fruits, rich christmas cake, ripe raisins. It’s kind of meaty, has leathery tones, creamy spice.
Palate: The punchy nose is tamed a little on your palate to become fairly gentle and relaxed. Chocolaty, rich fruit notes are there, but held in check and not overpowering.
Continue reading

Review: GlenDronach 14yo Virgin Oak

the glendronach 14 year old virgin oakGlenDronach 14yo Virgin Oak – 46% abv

Info: This is a re-release of the critically-acclaimed 14YO Virgin Oak first issued in July 2010. It’s bottled at 46% abv, non chill filtered and with natural colour. Matured initially in European Oak casks and then finished in Virgin Oak casks.
Colour: Fully golden, with hints of orange rust.
Nose: There’s a good grippy nose to this, which very quickly shows off those virgin notes, with hints of what you might expect from a bourbon whiskey. There’s a light bouncy, sweet toffee note, with hints of melon and ripe banana.
Palate: Thick and oily, with spices which build fairly quickly. Packed full of flavours, the virgin oak not dominating instead being well integrated along with malt, oak and fruits.
Continue reading

Review: BenRiach 18yo Latada

BenRiach 18yo LatadaBenRiach 18yo Latada – 46% abv

Info: This BenRiach limited edition 18yo peated single malt is bottled at 46% abv, at natural colour and non chill filtered. Latada is distilled from peated malted barley matured in American oak casks before being finished in Madeira casks.
Colour: Bright and sunny golden.
Nose: Good earthy, peaty nose with some sweeter citrus notes.
Palate: Creamy oils lead into a spiced earthy sweet and citrus malt. Held for a while syrupy banana fruits come out.
Finish: The finish shows more fruit than the rest of the dram, with the campfire smoke lingering around for a long time.
Thoughts: I’m a big fan of BenRiach, especially of peated BenRiach, and this one doesn’t let me down, very enjoyable.
Available: The Whisky Exchange – £71.45.

Continue reading