Origin: Campbeltown (Scotland)
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Ageing casks: Ex-Bourbon and ex-Pinot Noir
Added coloring: No
Owner: J & A Mitchell & Co Ltd.
Average price: € 110.00
Official website: springbank.scot
There are guiltily few bottlings under the Longrow label featured on the blog, and among those missing were the Red, which we are vainly trying to make up for with this year’s edition.
Launched in 2012, Longrow Red is Springbank’s version of the peat bomb with red wine ageing, as different from each other as is the length of ageing.
Varying in age from eleven to fifteen years, this edition has seen finishings in cabernet, Australian shiraz, port, malbec and Australian pinot noir, among others, with the latter appearing again in this 2022 version (the most mature to date), in which ageing lasted four years.
9,400 bottles produced in February 2022 and already hard to find, at least at the list price.
A more tame nose than might have been expected, where impressions of barbecue are softened and almost subdued by red fruits, apple, tea leaves, tobacco and a faint mineral vein. Edges of paprika and pistachios join a background of chestnut honey and a hint of coffee powder. The wine plays at the tip of the foil, giving substance instead of covering up.
On the palate, the tones lift, a discreet peppiness brings red fruit marmalade and blood orange to the centre, with the wine taking a resounding revenge to the tune of astringency, especially along the length. Mineral and sulphurous notes intertwine with vegetal ones, while the smoky component of peat remains somewhat muted, almost overwhelmed, in roasted aromatic herbs.
The finish is quite long and dry, where the smoke goes to the rescue without forgetting the excellent performance of the wine, left to express itself in red fruits and astringency with some saline touches.
An imperfect and somewhat unbalanced whisky, which especially in the mouth allows itself to be dominated by the finishing, leaving little room for refinement. But it isn’t a total surrender to the pinot, the substance of the distillate still manages to emerge, bringing home a result that is in any case dignified if not exciting.