Organic fruit, organic vegetables, organic meat and now organic whisky. Yes an organic whisky. The Benromach Organic. This concept intrigued me. How can a whisky be organic?
Well, it all starts in the field with certified organic Scottish barley that has been certified by the Soil Association. Organic yeast is then added with pure spring water from Romach hills.
Scottish whisky is traditionally aged in second hand barrels, but this can’t be the case with an organic whisky, so they had to use organic barrels made from wild grown American oak trees. Once the trees were felled, there was no chemicals, insecticides or preservatives added to the wood prior to them being coopered into barrels.
The Benromach Organic is then bottled at 43%, with no filtering to ensure all the flavor and character comes through. Of course there is no caramel colouring added either.
It all sounds like a lot of effort but was it really worth it?
Jim Murray seems to think so. He rated it at 91 points. “You can not do other than sit up and take notice of this guns-blazing big ‘un. An absolute treat”
The Benromach Organic is so unusual that it is worth trying. The fact that it is organic is really neither here nor there for me personally, but the fact that it is the only Scottish whisky bottled in virgin oak makes it really special. For the first time we will be able to taste the pure spirit of Scotland without the taint of bourbon or sherry from the previous usage of the cask.
Colour: Golden Brown.
Nose: Sweet with malty aromas. A perfumed note emerges. The fruitiness remains – peaches and pears. Sweetness develops into cream toffees.
Taste: Malty with sweet oak flavours. Hints of drier fruit – sultanas and raisins.
Finish: Sweet oak and hints of fruit
Comments: A deceptively distinguished malt that offers more complexity than first meets the eye.