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Benromach 2006 Peat Smoke / Bot.2016

"Orchard Fire"

8 583

@cricklewoodReview by @cricklewood

16th Aug 2018


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

While Benromach has won over many with their old school style malt, it hasn't quite stirred up the frenzy that each Springbank release has caused. It might seem unfair to compare them but I believe them to be related in many ways. Family owned, longer fermentation styles, less automation, good cask policy, both are the distilling arms of Independent bottlers. The 10yr old and it's Imperial strengths counterpart are confirmed winners, let's dive into the range.

This 2006 Peat Smoke is part of what they've dubbed their contrast range, peated malt in the 67ppm range (no source listed), first fill bourbon casks, 46%, no mention of chill filtration though.

Nose: Farmy, earthy peat when first poured, then abruptly a surprising note of pears, apricot paste, it's very unusual. Underneath all of that the it's very close to the grain, a touch of old lemons, glycerin & talcum powder.The smoke is there but not overwhelming once it subsides there is a bit of oak and vanilla but surprisingly isn't dominant for a first-fill bourbon. A nice nose, very round, the peat doesn't dominate.

Palate: Sweet, dark, jujubes, that instant peaches & cream oatmeal with smoke blown over the top. There is a bit of citrus, linseed oil & powdered sugar with loads of grain and a touch of oak, the texture is a bit thin.

Finish: It keeps bouncing between earthy tones, plantain, mezcal and a strange sweetness, almost artificial, like those swirled strawberry and yogurt candies. The oak is most present at the end.

It's a nice take on the genre (young heavily peated bourbon cask) its different than the Islay style in that it has no maritime influence but I think it's much closer than peated whiskys by Glendronach or Balvenie for example. Yet it's not distinct enough, it doesn't really pull you in like the 10 yr old,perhaps if it was at higher proof like some of their single barrel releases it would be more effective.

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RikS commented

Nice review. At basically the same price, this one doesn't seem to compel a departure from the regular 10.

3 months ago 0

cricklewood commented

@RikS it's worth trying especially in a flight of peated whisky or if trying to understand the difference between Islay peat and Speyside peat for example. The 10 yr old is a tough act to follow, it's a testament to how well it's vatted.

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

Hewie commented

That is an informative and helpful review - thanks. I also make a similar comparison between these guys and Springbank. I too am finding the differences between peat from different places interesting.

3 months ago 0

BlueNote commented

Very helpful review @cricklewood. 83 points does not compel me to invest in a bottle, but I would love to try a sample out of sheer curiosity. At a similar price point I would always opt for the standard 10. I still prefer it to the slightly bitter edged 100 proof version.

3 months ago 1Who liked this?

cricklewood commented

@Hewie it's still an enjoyable dram and might rate higher for some folks. It's my girlfriends bottle but I don't think either of us would replace it's more expensive than the 10 in our hood. I did enjoy the wine cask variants I'll post a review of one soon.

I would love to try the triple distilled version of this to see how it affects the distillate.

3 months ago 2Who liked this?

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