Past halfway now, an awesome competition so far and here’s another total blindsider (for me at least). I think I’ve only tried one Braeval before, and I’m not even sure about it. Braeval is a Speyside distillery owned by Chivas brothers and mainly used in theit blends. This bottling is part of a series of single cask bottlings that Chivas releases to showcase their lesser known distilleries (a la Flora & Fauna). It was quite a thick and oily dram and I went with a bourbon matured Bunnahabhain because there had not yet been an Islay whisky in the competition (little did I know what was coming up next)
Initial impressions: Bubbles, quite viscous. Light colour, very classic whisky smells, mainly dunnage and old wood.
Guess: Bunnahabhain 12 by The Malt Man (https://www.whiskybase.com/whiskies/whisky/91713/bunnahabhain-2004-mbl)
Aged 16 years. 54.7% ABV. Matured in a 2nd fill hogshead. No colourant added, non-chill filtered and bottled at cask strength from a single cask.
Nose: Stone fruits. Wood oils. Carbolic soap. Ashy yet not smoky. Fine dust. Honey flavoured sweets. Sultanas.
Palate: Malt. Bitter wood. Seville oranges. Sour porridge. A bit hot. Copper. Green peppers.
Finish: Long. Slightly bitter. Light wood. Wood oils. Hay. White tea.
Would I buy this: No
Would I order this in a bar: Yes
Would I drink this if someone gave me a glass: Yes
I found this one to be very good but a tad boring. It had all the notes I could think of if I had to describe the general concept of whisky to a total stranger, but nothing truly unique. It’s an issue I have with a lot of these single malts mainly used for blending. Still a very enjoyable sipper though.