For those of you who haven’t noticed it, Benromach is HOT these days! Since the day word got out Gordon & MacPhail are taking over the distillery, people started to take an interest, but nothing more. But all of a sudden Benromach seems to have arrived. The core range got a bit changed and the look modernized. Big winner from this all: The Benromach 10yo and when it was released later in 2014 The Benromach 10yo “100 Proof”, both reviewed by me lately. Gordon & MacPhail are some kind of synonym for quality, so even though the 30yo, we are about to review, was distilled under different management, The Whisky was cleared for release.
Color: Light gold with a pinkish hue. Sherry all right.
Nose: Extremely malty and waxy. Stuff you smell from older Whiskies. Wood excellently blended in, never to overpower. Great balance already. Vegetal oil and old polished furniture. Polished a long time ago for the last time. Next dry and powdery. Aren’t there any sherry note then? Yes there are. Although this could be from different kinds of Sherry casks, I’m especially picking up notes from Fino Sherry, hence the light colour? Although Fino’s are quite dry or even bone dry, This Whisky’s aroma promises some sweetness. Distant remnant of smoke and coal. The whole has some “oldness” to it.
Taste: Sugary sweet, (marzipan, vanilla), with fruity Sherry. Dry old raisins. Slight bitterness from the (toasted) wood, but more in a refill cask style. Hints of burnt caramel. Elegant again. The fruits, apricots, dried pineapple, try to add some acidity to the sweetness but they don’t manage to. It’s only a breath of fruity acidity, not enough apricots to do that. My tongue proves to me that the finish is drying and probably quite woody, but the sweetness coats it all and hides this very well. Two layers, interesting. The finish is exactly like the body, a seamless transition.
Today this Whisky is quite expensive. I love it but it somehow lacks some complexity to warrant its price. Although there in nothing wrong in this case with 43% ABV, I would have like this slightly higher in alcohol, it would make the woody part stand out a bit better, and I hope it would balance out the sweetness a bit. As I said before, good balance and none of the markers I mentioned are overpowering.
Thanks Stan for the Sample!