Last night was the fifth gathering of our Bristol Whisky Club. We met at our good friend Keir’s house. He had prepared an enormous and incredibly tasty chilli. We had quite a few drams on the evening, but there are two that I will review here.
The first dram to review is The BenRiach – Sauternes Finish. This was our official club purchase, which we voted on and then split the cost.
Located in the North East of Morayshire, in the heart of Speyside, The BenRiach distillery is independently owned and run. The distillery was originally founded in 1898, but there was a near seventy year hiatus until 1965, when whisky production began again. The BenRiach has been independently owned since 2008.
Appearance: A Bold Copper Colour
Aroma: Orange Zest, Vanilla, Apricots and Golden Sugar.
Taste: This whisky is initially light, smooth and fruity. There are notes of tangerine and vanilla. This flavour is long and melts into the middle notes.
The middle is all about the bourbon barrels and there is spice of oak. This spice builds, but there is vanilla that sits in the background smoothing out the spice and never allowing it to become too powerful. There is the warmth of cinnamon and the power of liquorice.
This middle flavour spreads across the tongue and top of the mouth. It isn’t a long finish, but it is very pleasant. The spice leaves a warmth behind and there are a few different interesting notes also present. The vanilla is ever present, there are citrus notes and there is an ever receding spice, which numbs the lips.
Mouthfeel: Smooth, sweet and with a spicy middle.
Overall: This is my first BenRiach and after this I would be really interested to try some of their other drams. The Sauternes add butteryness, which reminds me of toffee popcorn, there is orange zest and there is the lovely copper colour.
Real Dram Factor: 7.3/10
More Information: The BenRiach