Friday, June 29, 2007

Malt Mission 2007 #110

Benrinnes 15yo
Speyside Single Malt Whisky
43% abv
£32

Flora & Fauna bookends to this week on the mission. Now listen, I fully acknowledge that this is not exactly a posh dram, no major climax to end the week. Well, sorry. Here's a criticism for you: Why haven't you sent me some of your Talisker 25 or Brora 30yo!!!? And what's your excuse, Diageo? Thanks to Royal Mile Whiskies for sharing this sample.

Ben Rinnes is the dominant mountain (Ben) that lurks over the heart of Speyside, standing to the east as you drive up the A95 from Grantown towards Aberlour. The distillery is far less beautiful than its surroundings, but it does have a few unique touches that add to its charm. Benrinnes uses worm tubs (like Cragganmore tasted Tuesday), used to use Saladin box maltings, and since 1956 has used an unusual form of triple distillation with 6 stills grouped in threes, similar to that of Springbank; one wash still, two spirit stills in each set. (What the hell is he talking about? Distillation stuff pretty well explained HERE) Take it away, Dave Broom (nerds only beyond this point):

"The higher-strength heads from the wash still go into one receiver, while the tails are diverted to another. The heads are then sent as a part of the charge to the second of the spirit stills. The tails, meanwhile, are redistilled in the intermediate sprirt still along with the foreshots and feints from its previous distillation. The middle cut is then collected to become part of the charge for the second spirit still along with the heads of the wash still distillation and the foreshots and feints of its previous distillation. This means that some of the new make will have been distilled 3 times, some of it twice."

Oh, one more thing of interest to some; Benr
innes has a long history tied to the Crawford's blended whiskies and is currently found in Dewar's, J&B, Johnnie Walker Red and Black.

A Benrinnes I had earlier in the Malt Mission can be viewed HERE. A website that inspired this blog's format talks about Benrinnes. A good weekend to you all.

TASTING NOTES:

Sweet molasses, fudge, room temperature butter. Saucy. Buttermilk, turning slightly vinegar-y to brown sauce, sweet and sour 'Chinese' food. Definite sherry presence.

Slightly sour off the top, sour candies. Builds in confidence becoming toasty and creamy. Sherry characteristics, prunes. Quite robust, dark chocolate and oak.

SUMMARY:

Not sure what Jim Murray and other critics of this stuff are on about, but this is a perfectly impressive whisky. Confident flavours, not too complex, but a sort of rich dried fruit creaminess and a fresh juiciness that is totally pleasant. To me.

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1 comment:

Japanesewhisky said...

Looks a fairly posh price to me.