Review: Aberlour A’bunadh

Aberlour Abunadh

Aberlour A’bunadh, Batch #47

Nose: Well, you’d never mistake this for anything other than an Oloroso-matured whisky! Damp earth and leather, marmalade, various dried fruits, chocolate – all the things you’d expect are in place and in fine fettle. There’s some slight sulphur. After a while there’s some vanilla, blackberry liqueur and (quite markedly) cherry – plus a sticky sweet/savoury hoisin sauce note. The fruitiness is just lovely.
Taste: Bit rough around the edges (and, at over 60%abv, it needs a good bit of water) at first, but then goes quite creamy. There’s some bitter orange with dried fruits. A hint of Cointreau and blackcurrant cordial. Some dark chocolate too. It’s not really sweet at all, which I like.
Finish: Fairly long with liquorice, marmalade and black tea. Fry’s Turkish Delight and more chocolate with raisins. Lovely black cherry juice in the aftertaste.

This thoroughly deserves its reputation as one of the best “bang for the buck” whiskies. I actually prefer it to several more expensive sherry bombs – with the proviso that I haven’t tried other batches of A’bunadh. The cherry that runs through it is particularly delicious. It is, undoubtedly, quite a young whisky, and it does accordingly have a bit of roughness, but I actually think that works here. It adds a bit of freshness and vigour, and keeps the spirit’s head above water amidst all the massive sherry influence. Recommended!

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