All these excellent Ben Nevis 1995-1996 expressions made me look at other vintages as well. It seems Signatory Vintage owns quite a lot of early 2010s casks, some of which ended up with other independent bottlers but others have been bottled under their own label. We’re trying a recent Ben Nevis 2010 in the no-nonsense Un-Chillfiltered series.
Ben Nevis 10 yo 2010 (46%, Signatory Vintage Un-Chillfiltered Collection 2020, refill sherry butt #130, 725 btl.)
Nose: quite a bulky distillate, with a fat, greasy side and some brine. Some grassy notes, porridge and linseed oil. The sherry influence is not a classic one (just look at the colour, remember refill may well be third fill…). A slightly sulphury touch and vague apple sweetness, not exactly what we look for in a sherry cask, but it disappears with airing.
Mouth: now this is better. A sharp briney side mixed with sweet and fruity eau-de-vie notes, maybe green melon. Hints of aspirin and gravel. Some waxy notes. Very close to the raw materials, definitely lacking some depth and complexity but essentially a well made whisky.
Finish: quite long, with grass, bitter lemon and some green tea.
If you like Springbank or Kilkerran, this isn’t half bad, you know. Young, quite austere and narrow and still far away from the older expressions we have been raving about, but showing potential. As most of the whiskies in this Signatory series, it’s very affordable. I found mine at The Whisky Exchange.