Bimber is a single malt distilled in London and they seem to be doing things right. Local barley, floor malting, long fermentation (seven days), directly fired stills, serious wood management, what’s not to like?
Founders Darius and Ewelina moved from Poland to the UK in 2003 and the first spirit was produced in 2016 – the first in London in over a century.
Bimber First Release is a whisky distilled in 2016 and matured in five first-fill Pedro Ximénez casks for three years. Genuine solera casks, apparently.
Bimber – The First Release 2016 (54,2%, OB 2019, Pedro Ximénez casks #6, 19, 31, 37, 38, 1000 btl.)
Nose: rich aromas of baked apples, dried apricots, blackcurrants and a slightly leathery quality. Hints of marmalade and berries. Hints of cocoa and coffee grit. Some buttery pastry notes as well. Some vegetal notes and mouldy mushrooms in the background, that must be the old solera wood.
Mouth: brown bread, brown sugar, a herbal bitterness, plums and leathery notes again. Darker flavours of toffee and plenty of milk chocolate, but overall rather dry, no sticky PX. Oranges with clove. There’s something ‘old bottle’ about it as well (mushrooms again), hard to explain.
Finish: quite long, with spices, tobacco and leathery notes.
Well, this must be one of my favourite 3 year-olds, hands down. The spirit seems to be of high quality, the cask choice was good and uncommon. A very interesting inaugural release. You should have bought it at £ 120, now it’s sold out.