Whisky Review – Bunnahabhain Sgeul na mara (Feis Ile 2013 bottling)

Feis Ile 2014 is almost behind us with only two more distilleries to visit. Today, the Islay visitors will go east to visit Bunnahabain and what’s better than a review of a Bunnahabhain Feis Ile bottling?

Bunnahabhain Sgeul na mara was the distillery bottling for 2013 and I put my hands on a sample of it with the help of the Whisky Speller tandem (Thanks folks!).

So what do we know on this whisky? On 20th February 2003 it was poured in to sherry butt No. 79 and carefully positioned in warehouse No.7, So it’s a 10yo sherry matured bottled at cask strength. let’s see how it fares the sunlight

Bunnahabhain Sgeul na mara (Feis Ile 2013) (60.1%, £220)

bunna-feis-ile-2013Nose: starts with big sherry notes of soaked raisins, sweet red berries, nutmeg. freshness and youth with hints at oak wood spiciness are lurking right beneath the sherry layer. ‘wasted’ cinnamon bitterness. With time it reveals lovely strong nutty notes along with chocolate fudge. It’s a great nose for 10yo whisky

Palate: I’ve tasted it twice with a span of a few months apart. In both cases it was full of spicy, chocolate, nutmeg, cinnamon notes, but on the first time it was full of overpowering oakiness that didn’t meshed in thus creating an unbalanced palate while on the 2nd taste it was less oaky and much more in line with the other notes as the extra oxidization improved the taste (at least for me)

Finish: Long finish with lingering sweet berries served on a plate of gentle oakiness

Conclusion: At first tasting I thought that the nose is great but the palate lagged behind as it didn’t deliver as balanced taste as the nose. However, the 2nd taste was much better and it was a delicious whisky. As a festival bottling, it’s now every expensive (220 quid!) but you may want to try your luck on auction sites.

 

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