Ben Nevis 10 Year Old
When people say old fashioned to describe something it’s normally with negative connotations. This is the farthest thing from my mind when I talk about Ben Nevis. These are guys who really care and want to produce a whisky that links old and new. This 10 year old Ben Nevis single malt exudes some beautiful coffee, chocolate and toffeed peat notes, a firm representative of the Western Highland style.
When Nikka purchased Ben Nevis, which had been closed since 1986, in 1989, it did so not to launch an assault on the Scotch market, but to ensure consistency of supply for its own Japanese blends, with production commencing in 1991. Speculation is that almost 60-70% of the annual output is shipped to Japan to support Nikka’s blends, or even worse, bottled as something Japanese when it is in fact from Fort William!
- Tasting Notes
Nose: Sweet apple juice and light honey initially. Fruity, with pear, red delicious apple and honeydew melon, plus a touch of apricot. A lot of buttery caramel notes. A medicinal touch, with a flinty note – not smokey, more like a mixture of metal and gunpowder.
Palate: Light caramel and apple initially, with some toffee notes. Lemon and orange zest pick up now. Sweetened anise. Some mild smoke and a musty paper note. Bit of tongue tingle, and has a slightly oily mouthfeel. A drop of water helps it open up a bit, with some malted chocolate notes emerging
Finish: Apple juice and light caramel continue. Some bitterness creeps in and builds with time, but it’s not offensive (more like coffee, or dark chocolate). Ultimately sweet enough on the finish, with a light corn syrupiness.