Ben Nevis 16 Years Old The Rare Casks Release 3

96 bottles @ 55% ABV, distilled 1997, bottled 2013, £64.95 for 70cl

Score 85/100

What They say:

It’s finally here… Release 3 in the Rare Casks series!!

We’re delighted to reveal the cask selected as Release 3 in the Rare Casks Series is Ben Nevis, a beauty of a dram from the Highlands of Scotland. Distilled in 1997 and aged for 16 years in a single sherry hogshead, the whisky has been bottled at natural cask strength and only 96 bottles have been filled and made available.

Just like Scotland’s highest peak, from which the whisky takes it’s name, the flavours are big and bold and the colour, dark and mysterious. The whisky has been bottled in its natural form, at full cask strength, 55% vol, without chill filtering or colour additives

P1050614

What I say:

Excited to try Ben Nevis Distillery expression as this was another of the Abbey Whisky Rare Cask series which was from a distillery new to me.

Colour:

Dark russet or autumnal red

Nose:

Rubber plimsoles or gym shoes, sherry “fizz” leather, walnut, herbal notes, spicy cloves, develops into massive fruit & spices like christmas cake…

Taste:

Palate Dark brown sugar, treacle, figs, cinnamon/nutmeg spice builds to pepper, reminds me of Fireball Gobstoppers with that cinnamon and aniseed fire

Finish:

Long with spicy and sherry influenced elements, a little oily rubber returns and even more so after addition of water which sadly did nothing to improve this dram

Would I but it:

Of the Rare Casks series I have tried this was my least favourite whilst still being a very good whisky. Unfortunately the sherry influence was just a little unbalanced with the beautiful slightly peated Ben Nevis distillate. This was a real shame as there were some spectacular Christmas-inspired flavours concentrated in this whisky that were delicious.

Ben Nevis 16 Years Old Rare Casks is available from Abbey Whisky