Springbank 10 Years ‘Local Barley’ (2021)

Springbank 10 Years ‘Local Barley’ (2021)

And so the Springbank Local Barley series carries on beyond the initially planned five annual releases. The 2022 release (actually bottled 14 December 2021) is a 10 year old expression, made from Belgravia barley from Glencraigs farm. This year it was matured in classic ex-bourbon casks.

I hear getting hold of Springbank releases may soon become an olympic discipline. Anything from this distillery sells like hotcakes and Local Barley expressions are definitely among the most hyped and balloted whiskies. Despite the distillery’s effort to provide a bigger outturn of 15k bottles this year. I wonder whether the upcoming Springbank Sherry series can outclass it later this year.


Springbank ‘Local Barley’ 10 yo 2011 (51,6%, OB 2021, 15000 btl.)

Nose: a nice mix of hob nobs, sweet and sour garden fruit, lemon zest, soot, leafy notes and broken branches. Then also wildflowers, sheep wool and wet gravel. A whiff of vanilla ice cream and custard. Light touches of new plastics. Graphite. A bit simple and spirity, to be honest. It’s the most classic Springbank nose, there’s less of the typical greasy smoke and minerality.

Mouth: that’s more like it. More coastal without becoming brutal, with a slightly muddy and farmy side, chalky notes, linseed oil and gentle mineral peat, as well as sweet grapefruit, lime and plum cake. Some resinous and medicinal notes. Seawater. Ink. Subtle vanilla sweetness in the background.

Finish: quite long, chalky and mineral, with plenty of salty notes.

A good 10 year old Springbank, definitely, even though I found the nose a little disappointing. The release price was £ 90. Since the whisky is decent but not really exceptional, I think it’s well worth the original price, but not the secondary market excesses. Unfortunately even retailers are practicing secondary market tactics these days…