Category Archives: Benromach

Benromach 10-year-old 2014

Bought: Whisky Galore, 23rd May 2016

Ratings:
89/100 – Ralfy (of www.ralfy.com. His You Tube video below)
85/100 – Whiskybase (average from 11 member votes)

I have a 20cl bottle of the previous 2009 version of the Benromach 10yo, which is the one mentioned in the Whisky Bible 2016 scoring 87.5/100. This new Benromach 10yo came out in 2014 but it’s yet to be reviewed by Jim Murray for his bible. When Ralfy did a video for the 2009 edition he scored it 85/100. An excellent mark indeed but he gives this latest version 89/100 and the honour of his ‘Whisky of the Year 2014’. For the price and quality it’s a tough one to beat in Ralfy’s opinion.

85/100 on Whiskybase is a fantastic score, which is for my 20cl version. The full 70cl scores 85.38/100 from 289 votes so a lot of people seriously rate this single malt. Comments include “well balanced and full bodied”, “good value and very drinkable”, “very pleasant, very round, enjoyable” and “you want bang-for-your-buck? This is it. Big recommendation to anyone, but surely not for the complete novice (as this would be just too tough to get your head around).”

Here are Ralfy’s thoughts on You Tube (January 2015):

Benromach 10yo 2014 20cl

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Benromach ‘Peat Smoke’ 2005/14

Bought: Whisky Galore, 23rd May 2016

Ratings:
88.5/100 – Whisky Bible 2016
92/100 – Whisky Bitch (her You Tube review below)
82.7/100 – Whiskybase (average from 55 member votes)

In the Whisky Bible 2016 the author, Jim Murray, gives the 2006 edition of ‘Peat Smoke’ 90.5/100, which is two points ahead of what he thinks of my 2005 bottling. But the good folk of Whiskybase give the 2006 version 82.6/100 (from 50 member votes), which is 0.1 behind the 2005. So make of that what you will, which is probably nothing since there really isn’t anything in it.

88.5/100 classifies this dram as “excellent whisky definitely worth buying” and Jim Murray says of the taste “light oils and slightly over sugared barley. The smoke, surprisingly, takes a bit of a back seat while gentle oak calm the over zealous maple syrup; a fair chunk of marmalade in there”. A comment on Whiskybase is “a fantastic combination of sweet fruit explosions, big smoke and loads of earthy peat.”

This version of ‘Peat Smoke’ has a 67ppm rating, which is ‘parts per million’ relating to the phenol level, not ‘pancakes per minute’ like I first thought. The 2006 edition is 62ppm so a slight step down in terms of peatiness but I doubt anyone will notice. My phenol receptors aren’t that finely tuned. Jim Murray says of the 2006 bottling “a more measured malt than the previous vintage” but that’s very much his opinion.

Here’s the Whisky Bitch with her review of the 2004 version of ‘Peat Smoke’ (June 2014):

Benromach Peat Smoke 2005 NAS 20cl

Benromach ‘Organic’ 2008/14

Bought: Whisky Galore, 23rd May 2016

Ratings:
93/100 – Whisky Bible 2016
83/100 – Whiskybase (average from 42 member votes)

It’s a relief to know that no cows, chickens or sheep were harmed in the making of this whisky. Admittedly there’s a lot more to ‘organic’ than making sure animals haven’t been battery farmed but do whisky drinkers really care if the grain never got sprayed by chemicals and the casks were made from oak trees that received daily hugs? It’s unlikely. Benromach ‘Organic’ was the first whisky to be certified as organic back in 2000, when the concept of being organic was the ‘in thing’. The whole process had to be checked and confirmed before any spirit was made. The first bottling came out in 2006.

In the Whisky Bible 2007 the new ‘Organic’ scored 91/100 but by 2016 the 2014 release of this Benromach had climbed to 93/100, which classifies it as “brilliant”. The Bible author, Jim Murray, says of the taste “good grief: just didn’t expect that! The sugars from the oak have linked with the sweeter bits of the barley and rocketed off, with spices forming when the energy begins to dip.” He summarises with “for a whisky at a meagre 43%, the most astonishing explosion of intense barley and oak. More orgasmic than organic.”

Scoring over 83/100 on Whiskybase is also a very respectable score. Here’s Rosemary Moon with her review on You Tube (March 2016):

Benromach Organic 2008 NAS 20cl

Benromach 10-year-old

Bought – Whisky Galore, 1st August 2013

Ratings:
87.5/100 – Whisky Bible 2013
85/100 – Ralfy, of www.ralfy.com (his video below)
83.67/100 – Whiskybase (average from 23 member votes)

Here’s Ralfy’s review on You Tube (October 2009):

Benromach 10yo