An excellent 17 year old BenRiach, from their peated “Solstice” range. This is the second release, replacing the previous 15 year old version, and finished in a port pipe (a port pipe basically just means a cask which previously held Port).
Colour: Deep gold / amber with orange / red hues.
Nose: Peat comes straight out of the glass at you, a earthy mossy peat, not salty costal peat. After a bit of time to breath, rubbery juicy fruits start to jump out at you.
Palate: Smooth, warming and full, this is nice and oily with a good amount of alcohol to make your tongue tingle and the spices come flowing through quickly followed by the rich port fruits which balance out the peat somewhat so that they both sit there equally getting your attention.
Finish: The peat here makes more of a classic appearance, full with slight TCP notes to it. It’s warming and long with the port fruits winning the fight to the end.
Thoughts: What a great dram! If you’re looking for something alternative to an Islay that’s sweet, juicy and fruity, then give this a shot, it’s not the cheapest, but it’s comparable to similar Islay drams if not a touch cheaper, and much cheaper than BenRiach’s single cask batch releases, so a great alternative to them.
Thanks to my mate Yoav (@yoavgel) for the sample!
Available from Master of Malt for £57.90