Like many of us whisky aficionados, I’m a bit of a sucker for tradition. There’s something about floor maltings, hand written “computer” distilling logs and manual temperature controls that just sets our imaginations wild. I’ll dedicate the next week or so to a sampling of Springbank whiskys, undoubtedly the most traditional of the Scottish distilleries. I’ve mentioned Glenfarclas as a very traditional distillery, which is true for the outlook they have and the types of product they produce, but not for the method of production. So we basically have two types of traditions: Glenfarclas using modern methods to produce a very traditional product without venturing away from the production of traditional whisky, in varying degrees of sherry matured whisky. There are no fancy finishes, no experiments or exotic wood, only traditional sherry butts and ex-bourbon casks.
On the other hand, Springbank will try pretty much anything as far as wood goes, with some results better than others. But this willingness to experiment in maturation stops at the door to the distillery itself, where tradition takes over big time… I won’t go on about the distillery itself, but if you haven’t watched Ralfy’s visit to the distillery, you might enjoy the video series (watch all seven parts here) . In this series, I’ll be exploring several of the Springbank core expressions and a few limited ones. The perfect place to start seems to be the Springbank CV, meant to be not only the NAS entry level expression, but also to serve as an introducttion to the line, a curriculim vitae of sorts, having whiskys matured in bourbon, sherry and rum casks. It’s bottled at 46%, and makes for a good drink.
Springbank CV (46% ABV, NCF, NC)
Color: Gold, legs are slow and wide spread along the glass.
Nose: Sherry, some sulphur, honey, leather, a bit of peat, dried cherries, old tobacco, cinnamon and orange.
Palate: Sherry sweetness, dried fruit, pepper and chili. Mouth feel is smooth and full.
Linger: Long and peppery, with sweet notes permeating the spice.
This is a lovely introduction to the Springbank line, and a very drinkable dram on it’s own. The other expression, however, highlight distinct characteristics that are missing from the CV, which is to be expected 🙂