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The BenRiach distillery was moth-balled at the start of the 21st century and re-opened in 2004. The distillery tends to sell only to small or independent distributors, in keeping with the spirit of this artisan Speyside malt.
‘That Boutique-y Whisky Company’ bottles single malts, single grains, bourbons, blended malts and blends from a variety of renowned distilleries. These whiskies are adorned with cultish graphic-novel-style labels.
BenRiach is one of the very few distilleries who still malt a proportion of their own barley. Back in the day, the chaps whose job was to turn the barley over all day long would get a hunchback as a result of the labour intensive work, this hunch became known as a monkey shoulder. Look carefully at the label and you might see some actual monkeys at work.
140 bottles of this batch were produced.
Nose: Big fruity cherries, marmalade, a hint of red vermouth followed by subtle toffee and old leather. Then, just out of reach, is a little bit of peat just to remind you of BenRiach's other personality.
Palate: Red cherries, strawberry coulis leading to floral heather and a (very small) pinch of peat.
Finish: The finish is soft and gentle with a sugar syrup quality flecked with strawberries and raspberries with the briefest suggestion of crushed black pepper.
Overall: This isn't one of those big heavily peated BenRiachs, this is a fruity Speysider bursting with succulent red fruits that culminates in a soft, aromatic finish.
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Aroma: nuts and oily wood notes. Ripe fruits comes with time - ripe apples, pears. Some flowers, berries and nutmeg. Some roasted peanuts.Traces of toffee, caramel. Palate: fruity and nutty. With water comes more citrus fruits, red berries. Traces of smoke. Medium finish and wood and nuts. Comments: nice mix of nuts, fruits and berries. Well balanced and bit unusual Benriach at some points.
17th December 2012
This must be one of the best affordable BenRiachs that's out there. At least it's one of the best I've tried but I have to admit I'm just starting to explore this great Speyside distillery. I love the label but apart from that I just want one. Or two.
22nd November 2012