Puni Distillery – Alba


Twitter is a fantastic place to build community and find out information. There are lots of rubbish things about Twitter, but I have to say that all I have experienced in the whisky community is friendliness and generosity. One great example is this review. After a short conversation about Italian whisky, @kaskwhisky joined in and offered me a sample from an early bottle that she had purchased.

Puni is a very new distillery, built in 2010 and only offering its first actual whisky in 2015. It is apparently the first and only distillery in Italy and it uses two copper stills, which were created for the company in Rothes, Scotland. The Puni distillery takes its name from the river Puni, which runs close by the distilleries mountainous home in the Alps.

Aged for two years, today’s review is Puni Alba. Not quite a whisky yet, but an interesting spirit aged in Marsala and Pinot Nero casks.

Cost: £40-60

Appearance: To look at this dram is a deep, mahogany brown colour.  According to the Puni Website, this inviting rich colour comes directly from the Marsala casking and no colour has been added.

Aroma: On the nose, there is more wood, but this time mixed with the sweetness of raisins and dark, red cherries.

Taste: Finally, the flavour. This dram is thick, strong and pungent. There is a really strong fruit note, that one can only assume comes from the Marsala casks, as they seem to have imparted a sherry like sweetness and raisiny quality. These notes in the dram take me to the altar and childhood contact with the Anglican church. There is a thick, heady quality, reminiscent of communion wine.

As this initial flavours elapse, there is a really spicy quality, that is wooden and drying. This quickly builds and numbs the mouth. Here the youth of the dram is exposed and I for one hope this section of the final spirit is becalmed, as it threatens to overthrow the rest of the dram.

Finally, the initial notes return, there is a grape led sweetness, that mixes with honey and vanilla. These notes are short and don’t remain for long.

Mouthfeel: Rich and sweet like the casks it comes from.

Overall: Something troubles me about this dram, but I cannot put my finger on just exactly what my issue is. There are similar notes to sherry casked whisky, but somehow it lacks the depth of many sherry drams that I have known and loved. The wooden middle was overly spicy and seemed in my mind to knock the balance of the dram out of kilter. However, there was enough to interest me and make me want to return to the spirit when it reaches full maturity.

Real Dram Factor: 6.9

Source: Sample from @KaskWhisky

More Information: Puni Distilleria

Buy Online: Puni Whisky Distillery Online Shop – €74.00


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