Having been on the isle of Islay since 1883, Bunnahabhain is old hat at the whole distilling business, and with their newly released 14 Year Old Pedro Ximenez cask matured malt, they have clearly been putting that experience to good use.
Bunnahabhain are renowned for their high regard of their island home, where they were first founded by the Islay Distillery Company.
This enterprise had itself been started only four years before in 1879 by William Robertson of Robertson & Baxter Blending House and the Greenlees Brothers.
The brand is very proud of its place on Islay and celebrate all things about island life.They are slightly different to most of the other big names distilleries in Islay as they do not put as much emphasis on peat smoke, and tend to focus on sweeter, fruitier tasting profiles.
The Pedro Ximenez release
Bottle cost: £450
Matured in Pedro Ximenez Sherry casks, this malt is bursting with flavour.
They have been matured for 11 years in refill Sherry butts before being transferred to Pedro Ximenez Sherry casks for three years.
The nose opens with a cacophony of honey, caramel, vanilla, sweet nuts, biscuits and chocolate. These are harmonious and full, with lots of taste and flavour.
The vanilla and caramel melt together with the sweetnuts and bring in a little hint of oak wood.
This blossoms on the palate, where dried fruits, cinnamon and more honey abound.
The flavours tie in wonderfully together, making for a smooth and easy going malt.
The chocolate is especially good here and it bring outs some darker flavours, going perfectly with the dried fruit.
The caramel and honey are chewy and thick, and add a creamy mouth feel.
Raisins, apricots, sultanas and dates are all there, with a lovely cinnamon, clove and nutmeg spice coming out too.
The finish is bold and big, with lots more dried fruit and a touch of oak wood.
This is an excellent malt, bursting with flavour and just waiting to be savoured.
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