Saturday, October 9, 2010

Whisky review: Springbank 15

Springbank is an interesting distillery. It has the distinction of being the only distillery in Scotland that does 100% of the whisky production at a single site - they malt all their own barley with traditional floor maltings, they do the production and maturation, and they even bottle. Most other distilleries outsource both the malting and the bottling to large companies (or some other subsidiary of their parent company).

Springbank also does not chillfilter their whisky, nor add any coloring, and it is the only distillery to sell three different single malts: Springbank (lightly peated), Longrow (heavily peated), and Hazelburn (unpeated). On top of that, it is one of only three functioning distilleries in Campbeltown, a distinct region of Scotland that once had many more (like, 30 more).

And, finally, Springbank is the oldest independent family-owned distillery in Scotland, founded in 1828.

Let's see if their whisky sucks or not.

Springbank 15, 46% ABV
Campbeltown single malt Scotch whisky

Appearance: Gold.

Nose: Light peat, salt, raisins, and some juicy vegetation like damp, thick grass. Whiff of bacon.

Palate: Light coal, moderate peat, dark wood, black grapes. A twinge of bitterness.

Finish: Dry sherry flavor lingers.

Rating (of 100): 89. This seems like a brooding whisky, with a lot going on behind the scenes that will take more samplings to figure out. The nose and palate are good but I feel the finish is a little bit one-dimensional. So, in all, this whisky does not suck.

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