This whisky was distilled at the Bunnahabhain distillery in 1976 and bottled in Jim McEwan’s Celtic Heartlands range in 2010. Matured for almost all of its 33 years in Fino sherry casks, it was ACE’d or finished in Château d’Yquem casks.
Bunnahabhain 33 yo 1976 (49%, Murray McDavid ‘Celtic Heartlands’ 2010, Fino casks & Château d’Yquem finish, 465 btl.)
Nose: slightly austere but beautiful nose, with leafy notes, walnuts and hints of shoe polish. Mint and thyme. Some banana, apricot and gooseberry, but the fruitiness is on a second level here. Some leather and sweet mossy notes. Elegant and complex.
Mouth: herbal and spicy but in a smooth way, mixed with bananas and orange (syrup). Dried apricot. Some buttery notes as well. Earl Grey. Liquorice and walnuts. I believe the wine added the welcome syrupy touch here, which gives it a nice sweet and sour balance.
Finish: long, with pastry notes (carré confiture), walnut cake and herbal oak.
Château d’Yquem finishing is often a sign of hiding excessive age or other downsides, but in this case it balances the drier Fino notes very well. Beautiful Bunna. Around € 600 now.