Single malt whisky - tasting notes

16 May 2012

Speyburn distillery visit

Posted by: Ruben Luyten In: * Distillery visits|Speyburn

Speyburn distillerySpeyburn is one of four remaining distilleries in Rothes. It’s not open to the public which is a shame because it’s a charming plant located in a beautiful valley of the Spey.

One of the main assets for visitors could be their steam-driven pneumatic drum maltings. Instead of spreading the barley on a malting floor, it was brought into big perforated cylinders through which hot air was blown. That way the barley could be dried quicker and in a much smaller space but energy-wise it turned out not to be particularly efficient. The process was abandoned six years after installation. It’s rather unique though and now protected as whisky heritage.

 

Speyburn drum maltingsThere are only two warehouses on-site and the location doesn’t allow for a lot of further expansion so most of the spirit is tankered away to other Inver House facilities.

Speyburn boasts only one standard bottling, a Speyburn 10 years old. It used to be one of the most popular malts in the United States (still its biggest market by far) but in Europe you’ll rarely bump into it.

The occasional limited releases (Speyburn 25yo Solera Cask and Speyburn Bradan Orach) haven’t caused much of a stir either, although I’m sure many people will have their eyes opened by the Speyburn 10 yearsupcoming Speyburn 1975 Clan Cask. It will be interesting to see the effect of such a high quality (and relatively high priced) bottling for a distillery with an essentially entry-level profile.

 

Speyburn 10 years old
(40%, OB 2012)

Nose: a classic Speyside youngster with pears and apples, citrus, vanilla and plenty of malty notes. Not bad. Mouth: sweet, very malty and cereally (Frosties). Finish: sweet, still focused on malty notes.

A fresh and very harmless whisky for blend drinkers who want to take a little step up. Around € 30.

Speyburn distillery visit Ruben Luyten 2012-05-16

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  • SK: And just to prove a point, all of the bottles are still available in places where they usually run out. Lets see how many will be still available whe
  • SK: 2 years ago I tried the Caol Ila 1982 from Archives. What a fantastic whisky. Since then I always try to stock these Caol Ila from the 80s. Sadly no
  • WhiskyNotes: The real problem is that Caol Ila isn't selling (mature) casks to independent bottlers any more, from what I've heard, so chances are low we'll see mo

Coming up

  • Inchgower 1975 (Maltbarn)
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  • Peated Irish 1991 (Eiling Lim)
  • Elements of Islay Cl7
  • Benromach 5 Year Old

1680 notes by Ruben

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