Aberlour A'bunadh

The Very Popular Batch # 45

Reviewed by
Connosr member:



30th Dec 2015

Reviewer rating:


About this score:

The average score for this whisky is 90.

Best price to buy online:

Tasting Notes by Victor

The reviewed bottle is newly opened. Aberlour A'bunadh is bottled at Cask Strengh, is 100% sherry cask matured, and has no age statement. Most estimates are that A'bunadh is aged approximately 7 years

Nose: exquisite bouquet of dark fruits, plum, black raspberry, and currant. The pitches are mostly medium with a few high pitches. Sherry wine flavours are all you smell. Very beautiful. Score: 24/25 points

Taste: the body is thin on the palate. There is a nice translation of the nose flavours. The flavours are extraordinarily beautiful, but, compared to other batches of A'bunadh, are within a somewhat limited range. The sweet/sour balance is excellent. Score: 23/25 points

Finish: long and very flavourful; all of the flavours last long and strong. Score: 23/25 points

Balance: very good balance in all phases. Water added brought out a little caramel and did not add to the experience. Score: 22.5/25 points

Total Sequential Score: 92.5 points



Strength: strong flavours throughout. Score: 23.5/25 points

Quality: excellent quality of all of the flavours. Score: 24.5/25 points

Variety: very good complexity of the flavours offered. Score: 22/25 points

Harmony: very good harmony of the flavours. Score: 22/25 points

Total Non-Sequential Score: 92 points



Comment: this is a great A'bunadh, all right. All that I would ask more is for a thicker texture and for more deep bass-pitched fruit flavours


Whisky details









Amontillado Sherry



Nozinan wrote:

Very nice review. I agree with a lot that you wrote, though I wonder if my assessment would be as detailed.

This batch was the 7th that I tried (up to 9 now) and I would place it in the top 4-5. It is certainly better than the 46 but I preferred the 44.

30 December 2015 03:31

Jules wrote:

A lovely Scotch, for sure, but upon finishing my bottle of batch#45 I guess the conclusion I came to is that I am not one of the big fans of A'bunadh.

It's big & bold, but I tend to prefer the more complex (older) sherry bombs...

30 December 2015 10:06

Pierre_W wrote:

Lovely review, @Victor, many thanks for sharing your thoughts on Aberlour A'bunadh. I feel a bit the same like @Jules: A'bunadh has never really worked for me, too boisterous for my palate, and I have tried a number of different batches. But many, many malt maniacs all over the planet do like this one a great deal, so here's to all of them: slainte! Oh, and all the best for a very happy New Year!

30 December 2015 13:49

mscottydunc wrote:

Thanks for the review Victor, always great to hear opinions on a scotch I like from someone who writes such great reviews. I haven't tried batch 45, but love the other batches I have had. I am definitely an A'Bunadh maniac!

30 December 2015 14:56

Victor wrote:

Gentlemen, thank you all for your comments. I do love several of the batches of A'bunadh quite a lot, while others are not nearly as appealing to me. While I am very much a fan of the big bold flavours, and am not repulsed by many of the flavours of the younger whiskies, Aberlour A'bunadh is typically for me a niche player: there is a particular mood or frame of mind which comes up once in a while for which it is perfectly suited. The rest of the time it lies fallow on my shelf. I think of almost everything in the whisky world this way: there is a key which works for every given changing mood. I like the enormous variety available to us.

To match the whisky to the mood requires knowing the whiskies very well...and knowing our own moods very well.

In the cask strength heavy sherry arena I regularly stock Macallan Cask Strength, Amrut Intermediate Sherry, and Aberlour A'bunadh. Hopefully relatively soon Kavalan Solist Sherry and Glendronach Cask Strength will join them. And a nice sulphur-free Mortlach would be welcome.

In the non-cask strength heavy sherry arena I stock Glenmorangie Sonnalta PX, Glenfarclas 15, and Macallan 12 Sherry Oak. Would I like a few more of this style? Sure. But I am not buying any Glendronach without tasting the batch first. I have not liked the quality of the sherry on the samples of Glendronach 15 Revival I have had.

30 December 2015 16:20

JasonHambrey wrote:

Kavalan Solist is magnificent...but hard on the budget at least in Ontario (>$200). I have never tried a sherry-matured Amrut, though I think that would be quite interesting (I am sitting on an unpened portonova though).

I loved Batch 44 of this (like @nozinan I suppose) - I've been sipping away at that over the past month.

31 December 2015 22:56

Nozinan wrote:


Yes the 44 was definitely above average. All I have left of my bottle is the 2 oz archived bottle I put away. I do have a spare though.

Likely I'll end up giving that one to my friend if he manages to get re-elected 2 more times (into the 44th parliament) unless I do better next time.

I do hear (from my MP friend) that my bottle of batch 42 was exceptional when opened.

31 December 2015 23:58

Nozinan wrote:

Would you say it is Klaek?

01 January 2016 04:32

JasonHambrey wrote:


01 January 2016 04:55

paddockjudge wrote:

I would say über-klaek in this instance because of a score in the 90's.

@marino has proved "klaek" to be a score in the high 70's to low 80's.

Batch #45 is is a great A'bunadh, an excellent example of an über-klaek sherry cask matured single malt.

01 January 2016 14:34

paddockjudge wrote:

@JasonHambrey, while you were at the North Pole during the month of December, you might have missed an amusing review which produced extreme hilarity on the comment thread....good to have you back from the deep freeze.


01 January 2016 14:42

JasonHambrey wrote:

@paddockjudge thanks for the link and remarks - much appreciated! Happy New Year to all!

01 January 2016 16:27

vanPelt wrote:

How I wish I loved this one, after my effort of getting a bottle. I pick this malt apart each time, trying to find the love, but my score always ranges between 79 and 87max. @Jules ' comments resonated with me, and @Victor 's own comment may have highlighted the dividing line: "am not repulsed by many of the flavours of the younger whiskies". I guess that's not me. I'm drinking the 45 again at this moment, and while the nose is nice, the palate just bites me with 'young-ish bitters'. Like @Pierre_W implied, I guess I just have to accept being jealous of all the people who seem to get such pleasure from this one. If only it were so easy....

04 January 2016 20:48

Victor wrote:

@vanPelt, I've still got plenty of Glenmorangie Sonnalta PX for you to chow down on, if I ever see you around here.

04 January 2016 21:01

Jules wrote:

@vanPelt so true - it's a scotch I really WANTED to like, but you just can't force it. I always reach for the GlenDronach 15' (if we are talking similar price-bracket) instead, and, although a much milder sherried dram, it just satisfies me far more than the boisterous A'bunadh. The newer Benromach 100°proof 10yo is another that I would prefer over it, actually.

05 January 2016 09:34

Nozinan wrote:

If only the Benromach 100 proof were available in Canada...

05 January 2016 15:47

OlJas wrote:

Nozinan, are you getting the version labeled "Imperial Proof"? It sounds like it's the same stuff.

05 January 2016 20:29

Nozinan wrote:

No, we get nothing even close to the elixir so beautifully described in his review (and I think video) by @MaltActivist

06 January 2016 02:35

vanPelt wrote:

@Nozinan, I just saw today that the Imperial Proof is finally arriving: https://www.reddit.com/r/Scotch/comments/3zshyj/review_163_benromach_imperial_proof/

I would never compare it to the A'bunadh, though; it's not a sherry bomb. I have the 100proof and find it dry and herbal (besides smoky).

Anyway, since I'm here, an interesting thing (to me) is that seem to enjoy the A'bunadh 45 when it's my first sip of the day, and the sip even tinier than usual, and the whisky is cold. But it doesn't hold up at all after the palate's been dried a little bit and the liquid is warmed (and then water brings out the worst in it).

07 January 2016 07:35

Add a comment

You must be logged in to comment if you don't have an account why not sign up?

Whisky reviews by distiller (A - D)