Tasting: Benrinnes 1995 24yo by Cadenhead’s

Is it just me or is there really quite a bit of Indie-bottled Benrinnes floating around on the shelves these days? At least Cadenhead’s seem to have bottled quite a few of them recently. I’m certainly not complaining as I’m usually quite partial to a drop from the stills of the distillery nestled at the foot of the mountain it was named after (well, more of a pimple to us Austrians…). During the 2016 Speyside Whisky Festival I had booked an event that was supposed to contain a tour of this distillery – sadly this never happened because apparently Diageo was unable to find anyone to do the tour, which seemed really strange at the time and was a pity, but hey…
Anyway, this is about the whisky – at 24 years this was made back in the day when they still did a somewhat whacky partial triple distillation. Yeah, you read that right. Don’t ask me to explain it…

Benrinnes 1995 24yo by Cadenhead's

Dram data:
Distillery: Benrinnes
Bottler: Cadenhead’s
Distilled: 1995
Bottled: November 2019
Age: 24
Limitation: 216 bottles
Cask: Bourbon Hogshead
Alcohol: 49,4%
uncoloured / not chill filtered
Whiskybase link

Colour
Slightly reddish Gold

Nose
Oh that’s lovely! Fruity goodness that’s often noticeable in Speyside whiskies starting in the mid-20s, matured in good refill casks! Oxidized sweet pears, waxed red apples, tinned tropical fruits, cassis, brambles, mango and… lychee. A slight hint of dusty oak provides a nice background. Very nice indeed.
Score: 88/100

Taste
Elegant and waxy, oily on the arrival, no water needed here. When the whisky opens up, we get notes of white pepper, mango, tinned tropical fruits and apricots mixed with background spicy oaky notes, caramel and a slight, pleasant bitter note. Very big, fruity and oily. Really enjoyable.
Score: 88/100

Finish
A slight peppery, zesty kick upon swallowing – this is still a lively whisky – followed by oak and lingering tropical fruits.
Score: 87/100

Verdict
If you’ve ever had the pleasure to enjoy a nicely refill-aged, tropical fruit Speyside whisky then you’ve immediately got a rough mental image of this whisky. Big, oily, juicy, fruity – a whisky that was given enough time in the cask to mature into a very pleasing dram. Excuse me while I move over to my reading chair to finish this glass…
Overall Score: 88/100

Check out the archive of all Benrinnes whiskies I’ve tasted so far!

Sample provided free of charge by Cadenhead’s Vienna. No other compensation provided.
Disclosure: At the time of writing this review, I am a shareholder in Diageo, the company owning Benrinnes Distillery.

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