This BenRiach was matured in ex-bourbon barrels before being finished in ex-dark rum barrels from Jamaica. It was released in November 2006 as part of the first BenRiach “Wood Finish Series”.
The nose is light and floral. Notes of apples and banana come first, followed by cereal and vanilla flavours. Interestingly, I did not get any rum flavours. This is a pleasant but somewhat one-dimensional nose.
The palate is medium-bodied, sweet and just a bit spicy. There are more apple and banana flavours, followed by caramel and vanilla. I also got some notes of milk chocolate and a little bit of rum.
The finish is short, sugary and a bit spicy.
This is a single malt with a pretty uneventful taste profile. The rum influence is there but greatly subdued in my opinion. Nicely drinkable but not more.
I think we could do without the rum finishes in Scotch whisky. I just gave away the remains of a bottle of Balvenie Caribbean Rum Finish that for me was undrinkable due to its sickly, cloying sweetness. I like a little bite in my whisky. Thanks for the review. I have liked all the BenRiachs I have tried, but I will be avoiding this one.
Thank you, @BlueNote. I, too, am fond of the regular BenRiach expressions. However, this release here was somehow betwixt and between as the finishing in those "dark rum" casks did not really add many new flavours to the whisky and at the same time covered some of the distillery's characteristics. I fail to see what the purpose of this bottling was.