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Bunnahabhain 12 Year Old


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@ssmith84Review by @ssmith84

6th Jan 2012


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Recently the wonderful people at Bunnahabain have changed their bottling of the standard 12yo. The bottle has changed from a green to a dark brown, the ABV % was bummed up from 40% to 46.3%, and they have changed to a non-chill filtration format. Now I will start this by saying that I don't think that I have ever had the original dram, save one possible opportunity where I had a glass at the bar. The notes that follow are for the rebranded version of the starndard 12yo.

Review was done with 2oz whisky in a Glencairn glass with 5-6 drops of unchlorinated spring water all at room temp

nose... there is a vanilla note that seems quite prevalent, sherry notes, nutty mostly almond, with a hint of smoke.

palate... hint of peat...? possibly? sweet, there is good vanilla flavor and more sherry notes, almonds and a touch more smoke then on the nose. I'm also getting a fig note in there somewhere. I also get a little candied fruit.

finish... long but not too long, I rather enjoy this finish but it is giving me a little bit of a burn, might just be my tongue today as it hasn't done it in the past and I've had the bottle for a while now.

Now I know that I am going to catch some hell from people about the comment I am about to make but I'll make it anyhow. This dram strongly reminds me of the Macallan 12yo Traditional. The sherry taste that seems to shine through is quite good and the smoke makes for a nice touch and adds something to the Macallanesk flavour that I seem to be continually reminded of.

Anyhow I rather enjoyed this dram, just as I have with all the drams from this bottle previously. I would say it is one that will continue to maintain a spot on my self and probably never get too dusty...

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systemdown commented

Nice review! It's already on my wish list (mostly as a consequence of "Ralfy's whisky of the year" 2011 designation, but more-so because I've not yet tasted a "Bunna" and I'd really like to try it) - your review just makes me want it more. Jim Murray rated this new bottling pretty well and I do admire him for his stance against chill filtration and use of E150 - the industry is listening and hopefully these things will become a thing of the past so we can enjoy whiskies in all their natural glory!

RE: Macallan - if it reminds you of that, so be it! I've never tried the Macallan 12yo but it seems to me it's one of those maligned whiskies that, for whatever reason, has people not wanting to admit to liking! I really don't get it.. but anyway.

8 years ago 0

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