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Ben Nevis SMWS 78.41 (19 year - Dec. 31st, 1997) - Refill ex-Oloroso sherry butt

A real sherry monster

8 293

@bwmccoyReview by @bwmccoy

12th Mar 2021


Ben Nevis SMWS 78.41 (19 year - Dec. 31st, 1997) - Refill ex-Oloroso sherry butt
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Despite the name, this is not what I would call a "sherry bomb" at least not like a Macallan Cask Strength or Aberlour A'bunadah. This Ben Nevis is lighter in color and mouthfeel; not as "heavy".

On the nose, white raisins, toffee, flan syrup, tobacco leaf and almond. The palate is VERY dry. Notes of treacle, red licorice and grape skin / grape seeds.

With water, the nose is burnt sugar, caramel and dates. The palate is now sweeter; candy, chocolate, toffee with a hint of ginger in the finish.

While not a huge difference with or without water, I prefer it without water. It seems the water takes away some of the complexity that makes this whisky so special.

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BlueNote commented

Man, does that sound good. I wish I hadn't wasted my visit to the distillery in 2018. I ended up coming away with 3 miniatures after my dear wife reminded me that we were already well over our duty free limit. Given another opportunity I would be in full on damn the torpedoes mode and grabbing as much as I could carry.

3 years ago 5Who liked this?

bwmccoy commented

@BlueNote - I've been to the Ben Nevis distillery twice and both times they were closed. :-( The first time (2010) was a Sunday, so I wasn't expecting it to be open. The second trip (2016), they were supposed to be open, but was closed for a private tour. I was walking around outside taking a few pictures when the tour group came out of one building, heading to another. I just followed behind the end of the tour group and was at least able to get in to take some pictures of the stills If my wife, child and mother-in-law hadn't been waiting in the car, I probably would have seen how long I could have hung out with the tour group before someone realized that I wasn't supposed to be there. :-)

Ben Nevis is still on my list to visit when I can take a tour and purchase some distillery only bottlings! One of these days...

3 years ago 2Who liked this?

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