History The BenRiach Distillery was established by John Duff in 1898, close to the Longmorn Distillery which was also owned by Duff. The distilleries were joined by a private railroad, with a private steam locomotive, the Puggy, to transport coal, barley, peat and barrels between the distilleries. Soon after the railroad was established in 1900 the distillery stopped production in the wake of the bankruptcy of Pattison’s whisky, a major Scotch Whisky purchaser. Only BenRiachs maltings remained in active use, producing malt for Longmorn. It didn’t produce spirit again until 1965 when it was reopened by Glenlivet Distillers Ltd. In 1978 the distillery changed hands, this time to Seagrams. Seagrams became part of Pernod Ricard in 2001 and the BenRiach distillery began operating for just three months of every year. In 2004 the distillery was acquired by an independent consortium, the BenRiach Distillery Company Limited.

The Whiskyphiles tasting notes

Official Bottling
  • 2009 BR BATCH 16 #6095 70cl BEHIND BenRiach 9 Years Old 2009 Single Cask 6095 (2019) - BenRiach 9 Years Old 2006 Virgin Oak #6095 whisky review: Finally a virgin oak expression I really rather enjoyed. Lots of Benriach cereal notes in here and very complimentary spice, honey and nutty qualities combine to give a delicious caramel spiced latte coffee like nature to this. 85/100
  • benriach-curiositas-10-year-old-whisky BenRiach 10 Year Old Curiositas (2014) - A distinct malt with great depth and a bittersweet balance. From the outset something tasted a little too sweet and floral with this peated whisky to convince us it was from Islay. Adam hit the nail on the head by finally declaring it a peated speysider! 82/100
  • Benriach-10-year-old-seagrams Benriach 10 Years Old (2015) - Benriach 10 Years Old (43%, OB, 1990’s) Category: Speyside single malt scotch whisky Origin: BenRiach distillery Bottling: Seagrams ABV: 43% Cost: £54 (auction) What they say Official 10 Years Old bottling from […]
  • benriach-10-year-old-whisky BenRiach 10 Years Old (2018) - BenRiach 10 Years Old Whisky Review: A well-structured 10 year old from BenRiach with plenty of sweet vanilla, citrus fruit and zesty spice on the palate, strengthened by malt and subtle, more sherried influences add complexity. 83/100
  • Cask 8737 Bottle Infront BenRiach 10 Years Old 2007 Single Cask 8737 (2018) - BenRiach 10 Years Old 2007 Cask #8737 whisky review: Another delicious example of BenRiach pairing with sweet wine maturation. This one seems a little more varied, with floral, waxy and coffee notes adding to the extra fruitiness the wine cask brings to the spirit. A little less sweet and more woody than the Sauternes (Cask #5807) matured expression. 85/100
  • Cask 5807 Bottle Infront BenRiach 10 Years Old 2008 Single Cask 5807 (2018) - BenRiach 10 Years Old 2008 Cask #5807 whisky review: A delicious fruit-packed dram with a syrup-like sweetness redolent of the Sauternes wine itself, there is a little unusual spiced and oily menthol in places but it is easily forgivable. Plus any mentholic notes are mostly fleeting or lost anyway such is the power of the fruity and malty flavours here. A great example of spirit and cask pairing that highlights all the right influences. 85/100
  • Benriach 10 Year Old Triple Distilled BenRiach 10 Years Old Triple Distilled (2018) - BenRiach 10 Years Old Triple Distilled single malt Scotch whisky review: A fabulous nose, the palate is a lot more subdued with a fantastic texture but a little too sour, under-ripe fruit and peppery spiced oak wood for me however. An unusual combination of new make or young spirit notes mix with herbal and woody more aged notes, leaving me a little unsure of this one. Perhaps it needs a little more time to integrate or a change in the cask balance as very little I could ascribe to PX was present other than the caramel/treacle/liquorice influences perhaps leaving it feel much more like purely ex-bourbon matured. An interesting example of triple distilled spirit from BenRiach. 78/100
  • Cask 2682 Bottle Infront BenRiach 12 Years Old 2005 Single Cask 2682 (2018) - BenRiach 12 Years Old 2005 Cask #2682 whisky review: Perfectly balanced earthy Highland peat smoke and dark and jammy fruits. 85/100
  • BenRiach 12 Years Old Arumaticus Fumosus (2013) - Despite its limited release, I would definitely buy this if I can get my hands on a bottle. Due to the masking or minimal peat influence on the palate in this dram this is the perfect whisky for introducing peat gently to non-peat lovers [or people with the pre-conception that they don't like peated whisky]. Over and above that this whisky has a lot going on with some really strong and stringent flavour elements but it is beautifully packaged together within the dram to make it an extremely experience to drink. The perfect Rumsky. 83/100
  • benriach-12-year-old-sherry-wood-whisky BenRiach 12 Years Old Sherry Wood (2018) - BenRiach 12 Years Old Sherry Wood Whisky Review: A great noser, this had a little more of a grapefruit and citric acidity on the palate than I expected but some lovely woody notes both tannins and spices that caress the palate and reward the finish. 84/100
  • benriach-12-year-old-sherry-wood-whisky (2018) BenRiach 12 Years Old Sherry Wood (2018) - BenRiach 12 Years Old Sherry Wood Matured Whisky Review: Surprisingly I found myself thinking this isn't as overtly sherried as I was expecting. Sure there is some spice but there is a freshness to the red berry fruits on the palate that was both earthy and refreshing. Overall quite balanced. 85/100
  • 2005 BR BATCH 16 #3791 70cl BEHIND BenRiach 14 Years Old 2005 Single Cask 3791 (2019) - BenRiach 14 Years Old 2005 Port Pipe #3791 whisky review: A classic combination of sweet and peaty which I just love! On the palate this has quite a lot of phenolic and herbal influences that preside over the normally much sweeter and jammy fruit from the port cask, an interesting turn around on the palate which I thoroughly enjoyed. 85/100
  • BenRiach17Solstice BenRiach 17 Years Old Solstice Second Edition (2014) - Doesn't disappoint, this is hugely complex and interesting. The nose reveals fruity elements of the port finish that are indistinguishable in the palate from other elements. This tastes like it has been carefully hand-selected and mixed to a recipe and the result is like the perfect Christmas mince pie. Perhaps taking flavours you wouldn't expect to work together and then blowing you away with how splendidly they combine. The more I drink the more it reveals. Thank You BenRiach! 91/100
  • BenRiach 18 Years Old Albariza (2015) - Delicious, reasonably sherried and peated but balanced beautifully, this is along similar lines to the Ardbeg Uigeadail but where that expression was feisty, youthful and punchy this one sits itself back in a big leather armchair and smiles at you with the reassurance of Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct. There is a depth here to everything, the sherry, the peat, the spices, even the fruitiness and yet fresh and light flavours are still swirling around in this mix just waiting to reveal themselves for a moment before you lose them again in the milieu. A definite thinkers dram -one to sip whilst reading a gripping book. 92/100
  • benriach-latada-18-years-old BenRiach 18 Years Old Latada (2016) - Another beautiful expression from BenRiach, our notes really don't do it justice but imagine a board laid out with finest beech wood smoked ham and fresh cut melon slices, that sweet and savoury complexity that comes from swapping between meat and fruit, in essence (again) something much greater than the sum of its parts is created. 90/100
  • BenRiach-15yo-1999-PX BenRiach 1999 PX Sherry Finish (2015) - OK so its past maybe a little cloudy, however this is an incredibly nutty and deep sugary dram that I just loved! This hit my flavour profile completely! I found this a lot more PX sherry-influenced than the official notes suggest. Yes there were hints of the underlying bourbon cask maturation, but this was NUTS! 90/100
  • BenRiach 20 Years Old BenRiach 20 Years Old (2016) - A simply stunning expression, made all the better thanks to the sensible pricing. This really is a well constructed dram redolent of the festive period and Christmas-time. A Dessert of a dram. 90/100
  • Cask 4437 Bottle Infront BenRiach 20 Years Old 1997 Single Cask 4437 (2018) - BenRiach 20 Years Old 1997 Cask #4437 single malt scotch whisky review: A great mixture of dried orchard and fresh tropical fruit, old wood enlivened with some zesty gingery spices. A lovely example of a 20 year old BenRiach and full ex-Marsala wine cask maturation. 89/100
  • BenRiach 21YO bottle only BenRiach 21 Years Old (2017) - A deliciously decadent dram full of dessert-like flavours enhanced with a sharpness from some of the fruit and gingery spice. 90/100
  • BenRiach 21 Years Old Temporis (2018) - Persistently spicy like dried chill flakes but never builds, a base of thick clotted vanilla cream and highland toffee provide the perfect foil to the peaty mineralic and spicy elements. 90/100
  • Cask 979 Bottle Infront BenRiach 25 Years Old 1992 Single Cask 979 (2018) - BenRiach 25 Years Old 1992 Cask #979 single malt scotch whisky review: A delicious old port expression that is full of dark berry fruits and earthy, herbal and tannic wood. There is plenty of "port" sweetness here but it is all behind the powerful flavours at play. Delightful. 90/100
  • 1993 BR BATCH 16 #7881 70cl BEHIND BenRiach 25 Years Old 1993 Single Cask 7881 (2019) - BenRiach 25 Years Old 1993 Rioja Cask #7881 whisky review: A great red wine influenced expression, fruity, full of dark chocolate and woody oak tannins. 90/100
  • BenRiach Authenticus 30 Years Old BenRiach 30 Years Old Authenticus (2017) - Post prandial in a very conventional way, full-bodied and filling with heathery peat influence and finishes like a wafer thin mint followed by a cigar in a deep leather armchair, had me thinking of Mr Creosote from Monty Python's The Meaning of Life (just one more wafer thin mint sir...). 92/100
  • BenRiach Cask Strength Batch 2 BenRiach Cask Strength Batch 2 (2018) - BenRiach Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky Review: Really quite drinkable at Cask Strength, this for me displays characters of each of the component casks though I feel the Bourbon and Virgin Oak influences speak the loudest on the palate. Quite heady on the nose with a huge hit or dollop of vanilla. There is some spirit and spice but just enough to make it interesting and add to the progression of this whisky over the palate. I could sit and nose this one for quite some time, but drink it only in small savouring sips. 89/100
Independent Bottling
Great Drams
  • Benriach-5yo-GD Benriach 5 Years Old 2013 Single Cask Series (Great Drams) (2020) - Benriach 5 Years Old 2013 The GreatDrams Single Cask Series Whisky Review: Quite light and spirity and shows signs of youth particularly in the coppery metallic nature. Not overtly peated - I picked this up blind as a dark/liqourice and burnt nature in which this gets most of its strength. Nice dark/dried fruit and sugary notes. 81/100
Master of Malt
  • benriach-42-year-old-1971-single-cask-master-of-malt-whisky Benriach 42 Year Old 1971 Single Cask (2016) - An interesting expression but perhaps a little over-oaked. A nice depth of fruits can be found but there is a lot of oak wood and herbality to it that for me didn't complement the fruit but rather overshadowed the sweeter flavours. Still an impressive single cask specimen from Master of Malt. 88/100