BenRiach 1978 36 YO Cask #5469

BenRiach 1978 36 YO Cask #5469

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BenRiach 1978 36 YO Cask #5469, 41,7 %

benriach_1978_36The Speyside distillery BenRiach are spoiling us with batches of single cask releases every year. The overall quality of these expressions is very good. These single casks will have a wide range of cask types, and finishes. They will also be a mix of unpeated, peated and heavily peated.

The BenRiach 1978 36 YO Cask #5469 is rather special for a couple of reasons:

  1. It has been matured in a sherry cask, which is not that rare from BenRiach. But it then received a bourbon cask finish! Usually it is the other way around. I really cannot think of any other whisky i have had that had a bourbon finish. Fun stuff!
  2. The second thing is that this bottle comes with an ABV as low as 41,7 %. It is stated on the label that this is cask strength, which means that if you had left this in the cask for another 2-3 years it could no longer have been called whisky. The reason being that it would probably have dipped below the legal lower limit of 40 % ABV. I am sure it would still have tasted great, but it is a much harder sell. Most distilleries are not even interested in marketing something that is not a whisky. I mean, where do you even start? You need different marketing, labeling, naming etc.

The BenRiach 1978 36 YO Cask #5469 was bottled in July 2014, with a total outturn of 215 bottles.

This whisky appear to be sold out.

Nose (22/25): Soft sherry notes; quite a light nose. From the color I would have expected a heavier sherry influence, but it is quite light, sugary and fresh. White sugar, ripe fruits and berries.

Taste (22/25): Fresh, sweet and well-rounded mouthfeel. There is a distinct sherry influence here, but it feels slightly camouflaged. I wonder how long the bourbon finish was...

Finish (22/25): More and more sugary. Some oak. White sugar, powdered sugar and vanilla. The fruit and sherry notes are almost gone by now. I like the sweetness here. It is just right.

Balance (22/25): Al all-round sweet and easy going dram. Fun stuff!

Score (88/100)

Sláinte! - Thomas

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