Single malt whisky - tasting notes

28 Mar 2013

BenRiach 1976 (cask #3012 for

Tasting notes by Ruben Luyten - Posted in BenRiach bought one of the four casks of BenRiach 1976 that were recently reserved for Holland. We’ve already tried BenRiach 1976 cask #3031. In the meantime #3042 has arrived (bottled “for The Netherlands”) and the last one is yet to come, if I’m correctly informed.

Of course the downside of releasing several similar casks at (more or less) the same moment, is the fact that people can easily compare. So here goes, #3012 in one glass, and #3031 in another glass.



BenRiach 1976 cask #3012 for Whiskysite.nlBenRiach 36 yo 1976 (40,1%, OB for 2013, cask #3012, refill hogshead, 118 btl.)

Nose: aromatic peaches, tangerines and yellow plums. Stewed fruit salad, but slightly shier and less tropical than the best 1976s. Honey biscuits. A bit more vanilla than most other 1976s, I ‘d say. Hints of mint and green leaves but less resinous notes than cask #3031. Quite excellent even though it’s soft and misses a bit of the archetypal pink grapefruit. Similar to cask #3010 for Auld Alliance in that respect, at least in my memory. Mouth: ah, here it is. Definitely BenRiach 76. Pink grapefruit, sourish pineapple, passion fruit and mead. More oak as well now – not exactly dry or tangy, but the zestiness and sourness reveals its age. Slightly less punchy than cask #3031, but not at all weak. A little honey and soft spices in the background. Finish: medium long, fades rather quickly but still revolves around citrus and oak.

It’s great that these Dutchmen have managed to bring four casks of BenRiach 1976 to their country. They’re bottled just in time. Sold out already (€ 300). Cask #3042 is still available but it’s rather more expensive.

Score: 91/100

BenRiach 1976 (cask #3012 for 4.5 Ruben Luyten 2013-03-28
  • Arild Een

    These 1976 Benriachs are something else. Does anyone know how many casks there are left of this stuff in the warehouses? They “must” be running out pretty soon, no?

  • WhiskyNotes

    About a year ago, there were 16 casks left of BenRiach 1976, six of which were marked good enough to be bottled as single casks. In the meantime, four have been released in Holland and two by The Whisky Agency / The Whisky Fair. So if there are any left, I’m not sure they will have the same quality.

  • Arild Een

    I see. Thanks for the info, Ruben. It is interesting how some distilleries are so vintage dependent when it comes to top quality. Bowmore and Ardbeg are others that seem to have had some years that were far better than others.

  • WhiskyNotes

    There are excellent casks from other vintages as well. Asta Morris has found at least one BenRiach jewel from several years between 1975 and 1983. I think it has more to do with age: some malts are best at a certain age, which means more recent vintages will become excellent in due time. The same goes for Bowmore: their new production will probably be outstanding in 20+ years. Not sure about Ardbeg.



December 2015
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Coming up

  • Lagavulin Distillers Edition (2015)
  • Talisker Distillers Edition (2015)
  • Laphroaig 32 Year Old
  • Glen Grant 65yo 1950 cask #2747 for Wealth Solutions
  • Mortlach 1959/1960 (G&M Royal Wedding)

1934 notes by Ruben

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