Benromach is one of those distilleries that I never really fancied much. Not because I dislike their whisky, because before yesterday I never had any. When I visited the Gordon & MacPhail shop in Elgin, Scotland last year, it looked like it was sponsored by Benromach. You couldn’t walk two steps without encountering a bottle. As G&M own Benromach, it is their right to do so, but is has the wrong effect on me. It makes me want to buy anything but Benromach. And I also don’t like the label much.
Both stupid reasons, but it did mean that whenever I was at a whisky festival or tasting, there was always something else that I wanted to try instead of Benromach. So it took me till last night to finally try some at a tasting in a local liquor store. I won’t say that it has made me a convert, I’ll have to try some more expressions before I’ll declare my unconditional love, but it was a step in the right direction. The Benromach 2005 Peat Smoke is a super whisky. Itis only eight years old, but full of flavour. Here are my tasting notes:
Nose: At first it has that rubbery smell of a gymnasium floor, but after some warming up the nose develops into something very nice. There is obviously peat smoke, but it is subtle. It is also very sweet and fruity, with nectarine and peach notes.
Taste: Wow! That was my initial thought after the first sip. I’ll try to be a bit more specific. There’s pepper and smoke. It’s also spicy and there is still some of that sweetness.
Finish: Medium to long finish. The taste of pears is what stayed with me most.
I really, really like this whisky. Maybe even more because it took me by surprise. It makes me very curious about other Benromach expressions. This 2005 Peat Smoke is also very affordable at a little over 40 euros. It isn’t widely available (yet), but you should be able to get it online.