I came out of my first tasting of this whisky, which was last in a lineup which included the Glenlivet Archive 21, Glenfiddich Gran Reserva 21, Glenfarclas 21, Jura 21, White & MacKay 30, The Balvenie PortWood 21 and this expression, without really feeling I got to the bottom of this dram.
Thus, I arranged a second tasting with a fresh palate. This expression is the newer version, the non chill filtered and non caramel colored one. The whisky is sherry matured and non peated. The whisky is good, and pretty complex, a tad on the oaky side, but not excessively so.
Bunnahabhain XXV, 25 Years Old (46.3% ABV, NCF, NC)
Color: Deepest Mahogany long legs with a lot of droplets clinging to the glass.
Nose: Very sweet, caramel, syrupy, desert wine, dried pineapple and sweet spices (cinnamon, clove and nutmeg).
Taste: Starts out dry and sharp, very oaky, with spice and fruit and with raisins soaked in water for a few days.
Finish: Sweet dry tanin sharpness, congers memories of rum with demerara sugar and spices in a long, dry and tart linger.
This whisky is very good, it’s not stunningly great. It’s a dram that will keep you nosing and tasting, but won’t drive you to undertake a quest to find a bottle and drop 1900 Shekel (£320) for it. What would make it a truly great whisky? If the oak were toned down a notch, this one could be great!