Bunnahabhain Darach Ur [Batch #5] (Travel Retail)
NAS, 46.3% ABV, RRP £39.99 for 1L from World of Whiskies
What they say:
Darach Ùr (pronounced Dar-ach oor) means ‘New Oak’ in Scots Gaelic and is named after the new oak barrels used to mature this perfectly balanced mix of Bunnahabhain single malts. Darach Ùr is a limited edition compendium of the Bunnahabhain tales only available in Travel Retail. Darach Ùr is available exclusively in World Duty Free.
The closely guarded recipe was created by our Master Distiller, Ian MacMillan. A first in over 125 years of tradition at Bunnahabhain, it uses oak barrels from a family run cooperage in Bardstown, Kentucky – the first time they have been lent their character for the purposes of maturing single malt Scotch whisky. Darach Ùr is unchill-filtered and retains its natural colour, with a higher strength ensuring the fresh sweetness of the oak isn’t lost from barrel to bottle. Enjoy this intriguing twist in the story of Bunnahabhain; the welcoming taste of Islay.
Wonderful balance of sweet vanilla, oak dried fruits and creamy nut toffee, Smooth and creamy with citrus flavours and a hint of cinnamon.
What I say:
Finally a new oak expression that I do like! Most I have tried so far have been acrid and drying and reminiscent of freshly sawn wood and sawdust, with a slightly overpowering and unpalatable new [green] wood taste. This Bunnhabhain expression seems to have taken the right spicy, sweet and vanilla qualities from the new oak but left much of the rest behind. This is likely helped by the qualities of the Bunnahabhain distillate that I already have great admiration for.
Sweet oak and pineapples
Apple and cinnamon tart with nutmeg and vanilla notes
Light and refreshing
Would I buy it again:
Very likely yes. Batch #6 is now out and a little batch to batch variation should keep this interesting. At a shade under £40 for a litre that is a lot of Bunnahabhain [Bun-a-harven in my best bastard anglo-scots gaelic] for your money and good stuff it is too!