Single malt whisky - tasting notes

02 Oct 2010

BenRiach 1980 (cask #2532 – Virgin oak)

Posted by: Ruben Luyten In: BenRiach

This will be my last single cask BenRiach for this year’s batch #7.

This BenRiach 1980 was matured in a new oak barrel. Sister casks #2534 (bottled for LMdW France) and #2535 (part of single cask batch #3) were bottled in 2006.


BenRiach 1980 - single cask 2532 - Virgin oak BenRiach 30 yo 1980 (51,2%, OB 2010,
cask #2532, Virgin American Oak, 181 btl.)

Nose: very sensual, with truckloads of vanilla and lovely hints of cotton candy. Deeply fruity as well: apricot, some banana, tangerine, strawberrries… Honey. A bit of chocolate. Invigorating spices as well, mainly pepper and cinnamon. A subtle hint of cigar boxes. Not immensely complex maybe, but once you’ve nosed it, that doesn’t matter any more. Mouth: still very fruity (apricot again, strawberry marmalade, more tropical fruits as well). Nice sweetness with soft vanill and a great “bite” of spices from the virgin oak. A little pine resin. Finish: long and spicy with fruits and mocha.

A full maturation of 30 years in new oak normally doesn’t work (the oak is too active and overtakes the original spirit) but for BenRiach it turns out lovely, especially because the fruit basket is big enough to counterbalance the spices.
Around € 160. Sold out…

Score: 91/100

BenRiach 1980 (cask #2532 – Virgin oak) 4.5 Ruben Luyten 2010-10-02
  • S.

    AMAZING Whisky!!!
    Creamy vanilla, Vanilla pods, dissected coconut, creamed coconut, hazelnut/almond paste, tropical/exotic fruits, big, rich, thick, wacky, wood-spices, honey, peach and apricot!
    PURE HEAVEN even though more about pure active oak than anything else but STILL I could have given this one around 92 points!…

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  • Roberto Sikora: This is really a great, great bottling. One of my favourite Littlemills so far... :-) Thank you, Ruben for this review!
  • george: i see you have tried st magdalene and say it is harder to find i am a collector of st magdalene and i have 40 bottles i am selling these date from 196
  • sjoerd972: I wish the guys at Bushmills would demand the labels to say "Northern Ireland" so we didn't have to speculate on the booze's origins.

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  • Bowmore Devil's Casks - Batch 2
  • Tomatin 1988 (Malts of Scotland)
  • Aberfeldy 12 Year Old
  • Blair Athol 2002 (Hepburn's Choice)
  • Fettercairn Fior
  • Bowmore Laimrig 15yo
  • Ben Nevis 2002 (Port cask #334)

1600 notes by Ruben

WhiskyNotes - Ruben LuytenThis blog is my personal collection of impressions, written while searching for the ultimate single malt whisky.