Tonight I have the pleasure in tasting another BenRiach expression with this “peated” Port cask #2047 from 2008.
BenRiach is one of 3 distilleries recently bought out by the giant Brown -Forman who once the acquisition had gone through then moved to bring Master Blender Rachel Barrie from Morrison Bowmore onboard which is rather a master stroke if you ask me !!
Founded way back in 1898 by John Duff the Distillery only lasted a couple of years before the “Patterson crash “ in 1900 unfortunately resulted in the stills falling silent, 65 years later the distillery once again came to life which is possibly thanks to its sister Distillery Longmorn who continued to use the BenRiach floor maltings.. These floor maltings were once again restored in 2012 enabling the Distillery to Malt part of its own barley once again.
This expression as stated is another peated whisky coming out of the speyside Distillery is rather interesting, this is bottled at 63.2% abv and at 9 years old it still makes me wonder what abv this might have been put into cask at..
So onto the whisky.
Nose.. A sweet nose greets you and invites you in.. Berries, dates, orange peels, pear drops, chocolate and gentle spices are all wrapped in a smokey overcoat.
Palate.. The smoke is instantly noticeable here with the fruits and berries coming in second. Once the smoke settles down those fruits and spices are quite enjoyable with a little oak and bitter chocolate giving more depth and allowing the softer aromas to come through.
Finish.. Drying smoke with fruits and spice.
Thoughts.. This one puzzled me at first ! The nose is so inviting that you just succumb to it like a helpless child in a sweet shop, once the palate settled down I really enjoyed it but the peat just dominated a little too much for me.
I have to say that this is certainly aimed more towards the peat lovers rather than a middle of the road style with a lower ppm that might just have pleased more people. This batch 14 Release is dominated by peated styles and I hope this is not a sign of things to come as BenRiach is a great distillery with some fantastic whisky that really does find favouritism with my tastes, this expression will certainly get the approval from plenty but may also turn some away..
Thats the beauty of whisky though, it’s all about how we taste that rekindles memories and makes opinions .
The journey continues…