Is there a more underrated series in Scotch whisky than the Bere Barley releases from Bruichladdich? I’m having a hard time coming up with one. Each time I’m blown away by these whiskies’ complexity and unusual flavour profile, and the Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2012 is no exception.
Then again, certainly not everybody seems to agree with me. While Angus Macraild consistently gives high scores on Whiskyfun, Ruben Luyten of WhiskyNotes isn’t as taken by the “specific cereal nature and the narrow style.” And community ratings on Whiskybase aren’t exceptionally high either.
I’ll just take it as something positive for me personally. Seriously, I’m surprised people don’t jump on these releases, yet seem to kill each other for a sip of Springbank. But what it boils down to, is that Bruichladdich Bere Barley is always easily available. Let’s keep it a secret for as long as we can.
Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2012 (50%, OB, 2022)
Nose: This seem slightly fruitier than previous iterations. There’s still the farmy, cereal-esque quality with touches of orris root and plaster, but the buttery, mineral-forward qualities and explicit notes of apricot, peaches and honey are leading the way. Whiffs of limestone, zesty citrus and pot ale too. Taste: The viscosity is just spot-on. Just a hint of white pepper to start, quickly followed by orange marmelade, peaches and nectarines. Also somewhat earthy and there’s a whisper of salted liquorice, as well as a gentle medicinal side. And lets not forget the malty foundation. Great stuff. Finish: Medium to long. Lingering spices, some fennel seeds and thick honey.
I've said it before and I'll say it again. This is one of the most singular distillates produced in Scotland. I can't for the life of me understand why these batches aren't much more popular. Personally, that's a good thing. It means I can secure a bottle easily. But I really don't get it.