It’s time for some Bunnahabhain love. Our local whisky club had a Bunnahabhain evening last week and there are a few more bottlings waiting for a review so I think it’s time for a mini series of Bunnahabhain reviews to start the week, it bounds to be spirit lifting!
First up – review of a duo of 26 Year Old bottlings!
The first one is a recent bottling from last November, done by WhiskyBroker.co.uk. It’s cask 7730, one of three casks filled with spirit distilled on 22nd December 1989 and bottled on 18th November 2016.
Bunnahabhain 1989-2016 26 Year Old WhB (48.1%, £97)
Nose: Starts with a classic Bunnahabhain bourbon cask profile. There’s honey, and sweet fruit notes that slowly develops into a huge tropical fruit attack and I don’t mind getting attacked like that! Pineapple, ripe banana and passionfruit (passiflora). There’s a dash of peppermint and vanilla pudding. After a while there’s also a slight old bookshop feeling and dark sweet honey.
Palate: Exotic tropical fruitiness, honey, passionfruit, vanilla, dark hue of honey, a slight peat smoke shows up in the background, gentle oak wood spices, old bookshop and new leather. Oh so very tasty!
Finish: Short medium finish, honey, sweet tropical fruitiness with gentle oak spices.
The second bottle was distilled two years earlier, in 1987 and was matured in refill hogshead. As far as I understand, the cask held Fino sherry before it was used for the Bunnahabhain liquid and the notes do support this claim.
Bunnahabhain 1987-2014 26 Year Old Liquid Sun (50.9%)
Nose: Here the tropical and exotic fruits shows up instantly (or maybe it’s because I had the WhiskyBroker one just before that?) Again a lot of pineapple and the whole nine yards of the tropical fruit basket. But there’s some sourness edge here slowly transforming the nose to soursweet sweetness with a touch of nuts and some dry tannins.
Palate: The tropical fruitiness are strong here but again with sourness, much strong nuttiness, white pepper, dark hue honey, old bookshop, coffee, cinnamon and baking spices, dry.
Finish: Medium length with lingering gentle spicy tropical fruitiness and coffee.
Thoughts: Both are excellent and exhibiting awesome tropical fruitiness flavours. The Whiskybroker one is sweet, tasty and very dangerously drinkable (still available for a very decent price IMHO), while the 1987 by Liquid Sun is more balanced with the nuttiness and dryness from the hogshead. Both are a winners and are highly recommended.
(Tasted at MMI club meeting)