Signatory Ben Nevis 9yo...

Signatory Ben Nevis 9yo (63.2%): And today I have a nine year old Ben Nevis sitting on my desk waiting to be uncorked... It is bottled by Signatory exclusively for SoCal Wine & Spirits. The spirit is distilled on May 4th 2011 and bottled on May 15th 2020 right after the whisky turned nine year old at a whopping abv of 63.2%. I know it is not the law but the general practice in Scotland is filling the casks at  %63.5. So, either this cask was filled at a higher abv or stored in a humidity and temperature manipulated warehouse or maybe kept accidentally or on purpose in a very dry corner of a high rack warehouse. Who knows..? All I can tell is it is kinda rare to see a single malt Scotch whisky bottled at an abv this high after spending nine years in a cask. The ex-bourbon barrel carrying the inventory number #142 which the whisky spent its entire life in yielded 229 bottles in total.

Color: Unoaked Chardonnay, pale straw color with small and stationary teardrops around the glass slowly turning into thick slow and oily legs.

Nose: Muted and hot first... Banana chips, pencil shavings and wool. Dried green herbs and apple skin. Water helps to open it up: Sour worms, limoncello and vanilla extract. Jelly beans, tarragon and apple vinegar.

Palate: Well, pretty aggressive as you would think at this abv. Plantains, Granny Smith apples and dry malt. It is grainy and tart. Water helps on the palate as well... Ground coriander, white cranberry juice and Turkish delight. Crunchy lemon cookies, candied citrus peel and candied figs. Pine cones, almond skins and young pot still whiskey.

Finish: Long with young alcohol burn, white pepper and ground ginger.

Overall: Yeah, it is young and kinda harsh as expected but also quite tasty to be honest. I liked how that possibly second fill (if not third fill) ex-bourbon cask started to work its way slowly on the spirit but it got cut short, too short... Maybe they had a good reason, maybe they didn't think that the whisky was going anywhere good but I still wish that it was allowed longer in the cask or maybe racked to age for a longer time. When you nose the empty glass you can almost imagine how beautiful the spirit could evolve on the palate if it was allowed another five years in the cask. In the end I won't have any trouble drinking it but I wouldn't buy a second bottle if I had the chance.

Price: $90