Something new from one of our oldest friends. We’ve featured a lot of Gordon and MacPahil’s independent bottlings over the years. We’ve also featured a few from their own distillery – Benromach. This month we’ll sample another from the smallest distillery in Speyside – the Benromach 15 Year Old.
The Benromach distillery was completely rebuilt by Gordon and MacPhail starting in 1993. The rebirth was completed in 1998, 100 years after it was first built. Benromach distillery considers itself a ‘ curious irony’ in that they (Gordon & MacPhail) deliberately refitted and modernised the distillery to allow them to stay ‘true’ to the old methods, but achieve modern standards of operating efficiency.
When the Benromach 15 year old is opened, a caramel aroma is first released, with sultana’s and a gentle campfire smokiness.
The palate is met with vanilla from the charred American Oak barrels, and the barley sugar characteristic of Speyside whiskies. The second flavour is what really excites! It is an unusual and unique flavour explosion of Olorosso sherry soaked in raisins and orange peel. It reminds me of Billy Kwong’s Duck in Citrus Sauce, that has lime juice, cinnamon, orange peel and star anise.
The smokiness really comes through on the finish with a gentle drying after taste to compliment and temper the flavours that have just exploded in the mouth.
This whisky is intriguing. It is like a conversation with a fascinating new friend that you just want to keep listening too.
Well done Benromach 15yo. Well done Gordon & MacPhail. Well done Scotland!