BenRiach Peated Cask Strength Batch 1
Info: Made with whiskies drawn from Oloroso Sherry casks and bourbon barrels. 56% abv.
Colour: Light straw gold.
Nose: Darker and more pungent than expected, yum. Sweet autumnal fruit notes, gentle light peat smoke.
Palate: Thick, oily, creamy, sweet and tasty, awesome.
Finish: Fairly gentle, quite sweet, nice and warming. After a few mouthfuls spices build a fair bit.
Thoughts: I’m a really big fan of this, it beats some Feis Ile releases from Islay I’ve had recently for sure.
Available: Master of Malt – £58.84
Thanks to BenRiach for the sample.
BenRiach 22yo Moscatel – 46% abv
Info: The BenRiach 22yo Moscatel was originally matured in American bourbon barrels before being finished in Moscatel wine casks from Portugal and Spain. Non chill filtered, natural colour, 46% abv.
Colour: Rusty dark gold with red tints.
Nose: A nice lively nose with lots of fruity flavours, some spirit notes and hints of oaky cask wood. The fruits are like mushed down autumn fruits with a dollop of chantilly cream. With some air, further rich notes of orange marmalade and fig come through.
BenRiach Peated Quarter Casks – 46% abv
Info: Fully matured in quarter casks, i.e. smaller casks than are usually used, which helps to mature the whisky faster. This is bottled at 46% abv, is non chill filtered and is natural colour.
Colour: Light gold, straw.
Nose: Light, bright, and medium peated; wood smoke and burning heather. Some spices, and light, sweet orchard fruits.
Palate: Rich and thick oils coat your palate easily with sweet barley, fruits and smoky peat. Hints of oak adds good spice.
Finish: The finish is long and warming, with younger oak notes lasting out for quite a long time at the end. Some herbal hints.
BenRiach 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.
BenRiach 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.
BenRiach 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.
BenRiach Cask Strength – Batch 1 – 57.2% abv
Info: In March BenRiach released its first Cask Strength, Batch 1 bottling. This finally draws a parallel with it’s sister distillery GlenDronach which has been releasing great Cask Strength editions for some time now.
Colour: Gold, perfectly golden in fact, lovely natural colour.
Nose: Powerful, gently sweet, dusty, slightly herbal, rather lovely. Classic speyside, of the slightly older style.
Palate: Nice, thick and oily, fab stuff. Quite powerful, but bear with it, you soon get used to the strength. There’s a good pinch of spices, plenty of malt, and a fair amount of stewed fruits with a dollop of cream.
BenRiach – 10yo – 43% abv
Info: Produced predominantly from spirit produced under BenRiach’s current owners. More info on SWB here.
Colour: Clear, medium to full golden.
Nose: Good powerful aroma, full bodied and malty. Green and red apples, a hint of ripe banana and a handful of nuts. After a while it becomes quite creamy.
Palate: Fairly full bodied, and quite spicy, although sweet with those apple skins, malt and ripe fruit notes coming through.
Finish: A fairly fresh finish that’s medium in length and gently warming with spices and a hint of tannins going through through to the end.
New core range expression marks a significant milestone for the Elgin distillery
This release is a momentous high point for the award-winning Elgin distillery as the whisky is the first core range expression to be produced predominantly from spirit distilled under The BenRiach Distillery Company’s eleven-year ownership.
Managing Director Billy Walker and his South African partners Wayne Kieswetter and Geoff Bell acquired BenRiach from Chivas Brothers in April 2004.
Bottled at 43% vol, the BenRiach 10 Years Old is Classic Speyside in character. The cask formula focuses on ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks – exactly the types of wood we favour at BenRiach. This fresh, lively, fruit-laden single malt captures warm oak spices, green apple, dried apricots, peach and banana with subtle touches of aniseed, lemon zest and barley.
BenRiach 17 yo Solstice (2nd Edition) – 50% (Peated)
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.