Origin: Speyside (Scotland)
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Ageing barrels: Ex-Bourbon and ex-Sherry
Added coloring: No
Owner: Gordon & MacPhail
Average price: € 65.00
Official website: www.benromach.com
Benromach has been adequately discussed on the blog with four products already reviewed. Today I present one of the latest arrivals, the 2009 Cask Strength Batch 1, the second member of the series that replaced the historic 100 Proof. The progression of bottlings is not very clear as this 2009 Batch 1 was preceded by the 2008 Batch 1, with both bottled in 2019…
But let’s not get distracted by these quibbles and get down to the facts: this is a single malt aged 10 years in a mix of first-pass Bourbon and Sherry casks, bottled without chillfiltration and without colouring at an impressive 58.8% alcohol content.
The whisky has a beautiful golden colour, full of brilliance.
The nose is very rich and powerful: the alcohol makes itself felt, but is immediately balanced by lots of fresh sherry, tart apples, sour cherries, plums, dried figs, nutmeg, candied orange and lots of toasted wood.
In the mouth it’s surprising, since it’s so toasty it’s almost peaty: initially there are slightly earthy notes of coffee, cocoa bean, black pepper, charcoal, and some tannicity, but then the sherried character takes over with lots of mulled wine, apples, pears, and cooked plums, black cherries in alcohol, and chocolate. The evolution is reminiscent of a gust of sea breeze at the beach while sitting near a bonfire, with prawns roasting on the spit filling the nostrils. In short, a lot of roasting, really meaty, on which the salinity is verticalized. Finally there are other sweet and markedly Sherry notes, always tinged with savouriness, so let’s say salt flower chocolate and salted caramel.
What can I say… a real bomb!
The alcohol content is not at all noticeable after the initial impact on the nose, and the taste is always rich, full, long, and certainly surprising, with this ‘very toasty’ combination of Speyside traits and Sherry influence. I have rarely come across such a successful marriage in a limited edition cask strength. Given the not too exaggerated street price of some online shops, I recommend taking advantage of it now before the 5,500 or so bottles produced sell out.