Springbank is such an interesting distillery not only because of their staunchly traditional ways, but also due to the variety of whisky they produce. For the Springbank Society releases, the same fresh Sauternes casks were used for Springbank (lightly peated, partial triple distillation), Longrow (heavily peated, double distillation) and Hazelburn (unpeated, triple distillation), and it was very interesting to taste the Springbank and the Longrow side by side, as there were significant differences between them, not least in a differing level of complexity. The Springbank 9 year old is a very complex dram, whereas this Longrow is wonderfully drinkable, but nowhere near as complex and interesting. I’ll set aside some of the Springbank and the Longrow in hopes of eventually coming across the Hazelburn as well.
Springbank Society Bottling – 2007 Longrow Fresh Sauternes Hogsheads, Distilled 11.2007, Bottled October 2017, 1134 Bottles (56.3% ABV, NCF, NC)
Appearance: Amber, legs running slowly off a sturdy necklace, with quite a bit of residue.
Nose: This is more of a classic Longrow than the Springbank, with the Sauternes having a bit less of a classic impact on the whisky. The nose is a little more floralPeat and pizza dough baking in the oven, heather honey and white tea with a hint of jasmine. A few drops of water bring up a wave of dirty peat, with a hint of vanilla glaze over a cookie.
Palate: Sweet at first, then spicy and peat, with a light fruitiness, with some light citrus rind. The spice has pepper and clove, with a bit of artificial sweetener adding in some intense sweetness.
Linger: Sweet and dry wood spices, with a chalky quality on the tongue and palate. Almost bone dry. The gullet is spicy and warm.
This is a fabulous sipper, but far less complex than the Springbank release. There’s now also a Hazelburn in the same casks, and I hope to get some of that too….