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The Springbank 10 year-old is my first ‘serious’ foray into Campbeltown territory, but it has quickly made me a convert. This is a remarkable malt, and has replaced several others as my preferred daily dram.
On the nose, I find sea breeze, vinegar reducing on the stove, and an almost visceral texture of creamy, fudgy brownies. Marshmallows, pastry glaze, sweet coconut, and wafts of peat all figure prominently.
The palate is at turns sweet and salty. The peat comes through more boldly, with a hint of sherried sweetness, and again some fudge and coconut. It is delectably malty, with a finish reminiscent of spiced rice pudding.
This is a delicious, complex, well-balanced whisky. Interestingly, I uncovered a similar flavour profile in an Irish whiskey, the Connemara Cask Strength Peated Single Malt, in an earlier review (connosr.com/reviews/connemara/…). Direct comparison yields notable differences, but they nevertheless seem like kindred ‘spirits,’ if you’ll pardon the pun. Springbank is known to distill their whiskies 2.5 times, a step closer to the traditional Irish method, whereas Connemara distills their whiskies only twice (and peats them, no less), a step closer to the common Scottish method. Perhaps they are finding common ground and, having met in the middle, have hit upon some of the most enjoyable characteristics in malt whisk(e)y. This is wonderful stuff!