Bunnahabhain 12yo 66.7% ABV from A.D.Rattray.

bunna/rattray
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bunnahabhain
  • Distilled at Bunnahabhain
  • 12 Years Old
  • Cask Type: 1st Fill Sherry Butt
  • Cask No: 900037
  • Date Distilled: 02.03.2009
  • Date Bottled: 23.09.2021
  • Number of Bottles: 555
  • Cask strength: 66.7%
  • Un-chill filtered
  • Natural colour

Appearance

A deep rich copper once it’s been oxidised to dull down the sheen. The thick swirl line beads up immediately and drops an all over film with faint thick legs visible.

Nose

Wow, the strength of it, nosing with my mouth open I can taste it on the back of my palate. I’ve had cask strength drams that are a bit uptight, but not with this dram, it’s full on, with those sherry cask aroma’s you would expect, figs, cloves, tobacco leaves, molasses, stewed dark fruits in general all pile in.

They aren’t alone though, lots of lighter fruit sweetness also comes through, cocktail cherries, raspberries and red apples. A dustiness comes along too, with leather and cola cubes, there’s so much on the nose.

A drop of water actually makes the nose even stronger! Now more wood is coming through, then cream soda, an earthiness and the syrup from a can of fruit cocktail.

Palate

The mouthfeel is mid viscosity, and it’s hot, very hot initially. Atomic cinnamon gobstoppers first up, then ginger root, cardamom, black pepper, black liquorice, and all of the stewed dark fruits the nose offered, and it’s surprisingly palatable at the ABV too though I will add some water later.

With more time I have to say I becomes sweeter for me. I’m getting sweet lemon, golden syrup, mango and guava. I have to say I’m not getting any sulphur with this dram, some love it, some hate it, so i wouldn’t say this is a “dirty” dram.

When a drop of water is added the palatability does improve, and more fruits come through, like a bag of Opal fruits (for us older folk), or skittles (for the youngsters).

Finish

The finish is quite long, the spices are still lingering, and the sweetness comes along with it. Sweetened espresso, prune juice, black peppercorns, flat Dr Pepper, cloves and cigar leaves, and it’s still going.

My thoughts

Well, what a dram, and i could go on and on about it in all honesty. First off, the ABV, it’s quite hot initially, though the palate does acclimatise to it slowly, a drop of water does ease this somewhat. Then aromas and flavours flood the palate, and i found it quite rounded for a 12yo whisky, and also the flavours are well married, it’s a whole experience rather than bits and pieces that don’t seem to want to get on together.

Coming in at £130 and still available i think it’s a wonderful whisky, that comes with free delivery in the UK, nicely wrapped, and accompanied by a sample of something else from their range, things that make them my first port of call when looking for a new bottle of whisky to be honest. This is a bottle i’d love to have in my whisky cupboard, and pour at the end of great evenings.


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