Single malt whisky - tasting notes

24 May 2012

Ben Nevis 1969 (Clan Denny)

Tasting notes by Ruben Luyten - Posted in Ben Nevis

Clan Denny is a brand developed by Douglas Laing (or more precisely their sister company Hunter Hamilton), originally intended to bottle very old single grains. Now it seems they’re using it for very old malts as well. This Ben Nevis 1969 was bottled for the Limburg Whisky Fair 2012.



Ben Nevis 1969 - Clan Denny for LimburgBen Nevis 42 yo 1969 (47,8%, Clan Denny for Limburg Whisky Fair 2012, refill bourbon hogshead, DL 8148)

Nose: as often this Ben Nevis balances between old malt, old grain and old bourbon notes. In fact I can only think of one distillery which manages this so well. Wood polish with subtle hints of glue. Old leather. Vanilla and dried coconut. Distant tropical fruits. Wax. Plenty of spices (cinnamon, ginger, liquorice). The oak is probably too heavy for most people. Mouth: oily with a big oakiness again. The result is sweet herbal tea and liquorice. Resin as well. Caramelized ginger and cough sweets. Soft bitter notes. Very close to actual bourbon, this must have been a relatively active cask. Finish: quite long, half sweet, half bitter. Rather oaky.

I love the profile of old Ben Nevis but this is on the verge of becoming too oaky, but if you’re used to old bourbon or grains, you probably know what to expect. Great nose anyway, and interestingly schizophrenic overall. Around € 225.

Score: 88/100

Ben Nevis 1969 (Clan Denny) 4 Ruben Luyten 2012-05-24
  • Sjoerd

    It still could be old grain, right? Ben Nevis distills grain whisky since 1955 too.

  • WhiskyNotes

    True but the packaging clearly says “Single Malt Scotch Whisky”. I think it’s just the crossover character of Ben Nevis.

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