Those of you who follow this blog probably read about my amazing visit to Bunnahabhain distillery. At the shop one could buy bottles from some casks used for their warehouse tasting which can’t be found anywhere else, and are amazing (talking from experience here).
I’d already bottled my own little bottle of an 8-year-old Peated PX matured whisky (if you do the warehouse tasting you can draw your own whisky to bottle from the cask), but while I was waiting for my taxi I noticed a few bottles of this one sitting on the shelf. I also noticed that it was not one of the casks that I tried during the warehouse tasting. When I asked about it I was told that it was a cask from the warehouse tasting that was nearing empty so they’d just bottled what was left. I figured you only live once so I bought one.
Glad I did, really really glad.
Aged 7 years. 58.6%ABV. Matured in a 2nd fill Oloroso cask. No colourant added, definitely not chill filtered and bottled at cask strength from cask 4903.
I don’t usually comment on the appearance of whisky because I think too many people think it somehow affects quality, which is does not, but look at this:
It’s pretty much opaque, full of oils and cask gunk, completely unfiltered. A thing of beauty.
Nose: Big, nutty sherry nose. Wine cake. Smells like someone went and mixed some paprika with some cacao powder, there’s a chocolatey and spicy note but somehow they feel like part of the same thing. Brine. Sea-rotten wood. Something slightly reminiscent of Aramis aftershave. Dusty.
Palate: Very oily. Bitter fruits, sweet fruits, juicy fruits, all dark red. A dry woody sherry note. A good helping of sea salt. Slight damp earthiness, like a bare earth cellar floor. Sweet but peppery spice on the swallow, like mexican candy.
Finish: Very long. Huge rich sherry notes. Dry. Acidic wine. Fennel. Dusty wood.
Would I buy this: Yes
Would I order this in a bar: Yes
Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes
This was a really amazing whisky. Very unique and a pity that there is no more. One of my favourite whiskies ever is the Bunnahabhain 18 and this beats that, by a long shot. Hugely complex for its age, very drinkable and the sherry influence is huge for 2nd fill. Fantastic, fantastic whisky.