Origin: Isle of Islay (Scotland)
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Ageing barrels: Ex-Bourbon refill, finishing in ex-Brandy
Added coloring: No
Owner: Burn Stewart Distillery plc.
Average price: € 150.00
Official website: bunnahabhain.com
Here is a limited edition (2,764 bottles) and cask strength of Bunnhabhain, distilled on 27 September 2007, which spent the last two and a half years of its eleven years maturing in ex-French Brandy casks.
This version joins others with different finishes, one in Port and one in vintage Marsala (which I’m very curious about).
As is well known, these types of casks are always risky when it comes to influences on whisky, especially if they are used for the last period of ageing, but Bunnahabhain has accustomed us to a high quality of their spirits, so I have faith!
Copper in the glass.
The overlay of Brandy on Bourbon produces notes of grapes, hazelnuts, berries, crema catalana (there is a slight smokiness in the background), dark chocolate, liquorice root on the nose. The nose is rather dry and full, also developing aromas of ripe peaches, dried apricots, dates, sultanas and waxed wood. With time, the sweet tones become more accentuated, almost to the point of cloying, the bouquet is very intense and evident even at a distance.
Wood spices and chilli pepper warm the palate, with an oily mouthfeel that reflects the characteristics of the nose in the tones of sultanas, dried fruit, bitter orange, liquorice, cloves, salted caramel, hazelnuts, dark chocolate. Rhubarb and tobacco in the background. The score is repeated and renewed, with the sweet notes losing intensity but gaining structure, with the bitter tones more accentuated and vibrant.
The finish is quite long and spicy, dry, with ashy veins, hazelnuts, liquorice, wood, sultanas and peaches.
A whisky that suffers from a certain imbalance, where the ageing barrels compete to overload each other, but which nonetheless offers points of interest, especially on the palate, with an amusing play of sweet/bitter contrasts despite its imperfection.
Other bottlings in the blog:
Bunnahabhain Fèis Ìle 2020
Bunnahabhain The Coterie Esclusive
Càrn Mòr Bunnahabhain 2004
Claxton’s Single Cask Bunnahabhain 16yo
Morisco Spirits Bunnahabhain Staoisha 7yo
Valinch & Mallet Bunnahabhain 22yo (2018)
Wilson & Morgan Bunnahabhain 2014