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BenRiach has classic Speyside style and Wood Finished whiskies, but the latter also come in peated versions. There is the Heredotus Fumosus (Sherry finish), the Importanticus Fumosus (Tawny Port finish) and the Arumaticus Fumosus (Dark Rum finish).
I tried the 12 Year Old Heredotus Fumosus, that matured on American ex-bourbon casks before getting ACE’d on Pedro Ximinez sherry butts. 530 cases (i.e. 3180 bottles) were released in 2007.
The nose is, to put it mildly, complex. Vanilla and young, sweet peat, dry wood, citrusy notes, but first and foremost crispy bacon. It lacks any typical Islay connotations such as iodine and seewead. It does have sultanas and cloves. Hmmm… this is a big, layered nose.
It took a while before I sipped my dram, because I couldn’t stop nosing it. It’s simply that good. But all good things, etc… so I allowed the golden liquid to enter the salivating cavity beneath the nose. The bacon came to me first, soon surpassed by licquorice and peat, caramel and something that reminds me of soja sauce. The PX does not put its foot down.
The finish last longer than a Florida afternoon shower and is again, just like the nose, dominated by the bacon and sweet peat.
The price tag is more than fair, too, at around £30. In 2008, this expression won a silver medal at the International Wine & Spirits Competition. A very nice specimen of a Sweety Peaty Speysider.