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What a odd name! They are old types of casks (60 and 80 litres respectively) used in the 17th and 18th century. Like the quarter casks from Laphroaig or the Octaves used by Duncan Taylor, they are used to speed up maturation, due to the added surface contact with the wood.
Springbank Rundlets & Kilderkins was distilled in November 2001 and bottled in January 2012 at 10 years old.
Nose: starts on hay and nutmeg and gets then more syrupy with hints of dried fruits, toffee and honey. Hints of nougat, roasted nuts and milk chocolate. There is some pepper and herbs but it’s certainly not woody. Nice to find a couple of coastal notes as well, even a very soft farmy / medicinal veil.
Mouth: oily and pretty smoky now, really nice. Great balance between honeyed sweetness (rhubarb, peach jam, raisins) and spices from the oak (pepper, cinnamon). Hints of caramelized apple. Tobacco and leather. Full-flavoured, really good.
Finish: medium long, sherried, with pecan nuts, toffee, liquorice and a lingering maritime edge.
A very rich and well-made Springbank, taken out of the casks at the perfect moment. I’d be happy to see more experiments like this, or even a regular “small cask” release in the core range?