Springbank 9 Years Old 2004 Gaja Barolo

Campbeltown single malt scotch whisky

54.7% ABV, £57.95 for 70 from The Whisky Exchange

Score: 85/100

Springbank9yoGajaBarolo

What they say:

A 2004 vintage Springbank bottled at 9 years of age. The first four years was spent in refill bourbon casks, with the final five years maturation taking place in casks that were formerly used for Barolo. Distilled February 2004, Bottled October 2013, Outturn: 11,000 bottles

What I say:

Sampled 16th January 2015 during Woodwinters Springbank sampling evening with Grant MacPherson from Springbank Distillers

Colour:

Rose copper gold (7/20)

Nose:

Cereal barley malt, fruity – red fruits, estery, pear drops, tannin, gentle and light leathery aroma, almond oil/marzipan, slightly dirty peat and engine oil

Taste:

Initially peaty and malty before becoming sweet, creamy and fruity like strawberries and vanilla cream, toffee oak and a pinch of salt thrown in for good measure

Finish:

Medium-long, earthy peat, rich fruits and a salty tang

Overall:

Nicely balanced between the character of the Springbank spirit and Cask maturation. Enough fruit to liven this on up without becoming overpowering and in some aspects adds a distraction from the dirty peaty and slightly coastal nature of Springbank though it is still evident under all that rich fruit.