Thanks to /u/devoz for pouring me a dram.
By some fluke I ended up with another peated, younger BenRiach. It’s almost like I know what I like when I ask for samples from other adults who pour me things that I take home.
Where was I? Oh, yes. BenRiach 10 2009 Peated, an ex-bourbon barrel single cask BenRiach bottled specifically for the Wee Rock Whisky Club, a BC based whisky group.
It’s always interesting to see what different groups pick. For instance, would I pick this for the Toronto Whisky Society, if I had the chance? Well we’ll have to see, so I’ll just get to it.
Price: N/A at the LCBO
Date of Distillation: 21/02/2007
Date of Bottling: July/2017
Cask # 584
Cask Type: Bourbon Barrel
Bottle No. 102 of 180
Colour: 7.5Y 9/8
Nose: Nectarine, anise, strawberry, earth, grapefruit, brownies
At first pretty simple. Starts growing, the fruit gets more tart, bit more interesting, adds in some spice. Water brings out more of an earthiness but also really amps up the complexity on the sugar. Get this lovely buttery/cocoa…. Whatever, you know what a brownie is. I hope.
Taste: Chocolate biscuit, brown sugar, anise, vanilla, caramel/butter, floral
The taste almost takes a cue from the growing complexity of the nose and just starts there. More big chocolate, smoke still coming as anise, the ex-bourbon influence being really strong with vanilla and buttery/caramel.
Suffice to say, as a sweet addicted person, this is right up my alley. So much so it’s by my house and I’m calling a surveyor to see if it’s on my property.
Finish: Caramel, brine, peat, grapefruit, basil, chocolate, raspberry hot chocolate
Nice saltiness with the caramel, but this mirrors the rest. First some light, simpler notes, building up with sudden herbal/spice, and then ending in a big, complex chocolate orgy of happy times. As opposed to the morose orgies, which we don’t talk about anymore.
Conclusion: Like a smoked brownie. That’s totally it. I would have picked this easily. Heck I’m jealous we didn’t pick this, or have a chance, but hats off to the Wee Rock Whisky Club for picking this.
I said in my last BenRiach review that the ugly elephant in the room is BenRiach 10 Curiositas. It’s really good, so any single cask has to be quite the fluke to surpass it. It has to be different to command the difference in price. It can’t just be cask strength and end up better, because the standard is quite good.
This does that. This is worth it. If you can find a sample, as I have and was lucky enough to do so, enjoy it. Cheers to the Wee Rock for picking a good one. Can I be a member on the other side of the country?
Scotch review #1116, Speyside review #318, Whisky review #1733