Black Bottle Original Blend 43% (Bunnahabhain) Smoke, vanilla, an overipe orange note, elastoplast and then wintergreen starts to dominate. All these notes settled on a solid backbone of smoked grain. The palate has a gorgeous hit of the sweetest vanilla then a short, peated chilli bite followed by a lingering salty, smoky finish. Water accentuates the sweet vanilla and citrus notes, while the palate offers softly smoky sweet and an orange schnapps on the finish. 89
Black Bottle Blend 10 yo 43% (Bunnahabhain) Laphroaig, Ardbeg, Caol Ila. There they are. A cornucopia of Islay malts. Orange vanilla, salty seaweed, sweet spices, cumin. The grain is there but is hidden under the weighty richness of the malts. A silky hit of orange tinged vanilla on the tongue, then an Islay explosion of smoke gently rippling to a salted fruity stew finish. The smoke and vanilla lingering. Left to develop, a delicious smoky toffee emerges reminding me that this has to be one of the best blends on the planet. 94
Bunnahabhain 12yo Single Malt 43%
Oloroso sherry, seville marmalade and malted barley soaked in vanilla with a coating of orange chocolate.
Oily, smooth and sweetly citrus on the palate, then a mid-palate of pepper and spice with a lingering finish of sherried oak.
Water introduces more of the coastal character with the pepper note giving way to a salty finish. 84
Bunnahabhain 18yo xv111 Single Malt 43%
Rich sherry and loads of liquorice, dark toffee and stewed dark fruits.
This is the whisky equivalent of royalty!
Velvety soft on the tongue with the sweetness of the oloroso sherry making way for the salt and pepper with a distinctive finish of raisins and toasted oak.
What a stunning dram! 92
Bunnahabhain 25yo xxv Single Malt 43%
Barley, citrus, a hint of liquorice, orange vanilla and Spanish oak.
If the 18yo is royalty this is pure aristocracy, cultured, beautiful and perfectly balanced.
A hint of smoke, perhaps charred oak in the depths, adds to the character and complexity.
Smooth and so mellow on the tongue, initially citrus soaked barley, then seville marmalade and a salty charred oak on the finish. 90