DRINK REVIEW: Bunnahabhain Ceòbanach Whisky

Whisky Tasting Notes

Bunnahabhain Ceobanach Nose: Wow. This one says hello by running up and grabbing you by the balls (or alternative lady parts). Considering this whisky has no age statement the pungency of smoke is unreal. The classic Islay iodine note is prominent, which together with billowing, hot smoke evokes images of burning pirate ships.

Bunnahabhain Ceobanach Taste: There’s a moment of sweet vanilla giving you a false sense of security…which gives way to a deluge of tar and white-knuckle rides of white pepper. Hints of charred lemons feature, but the smoke is like getting trapped in a burning rope factory. If it sounds terrifying, it’s because it is.

Bunnahabhain Ceobanach Finish: Peat, smoke and salted liquorice wrestle angrily for some time. Although pricey for an unaged whisky, I cannot get over its richness and unforgettable character.

Flavour 9/10    Value 8/10

Buy Bunnahabhain Ceobanach Whisky Here

Bunnahabhain Ceòbanach Single Malt Review Islay Whisky Tasting Notes
Pronounced ‘kyaw-bin-och’ 😉


Whisky Tasting Notes

Auchentoshan 12 Year Nose: Not much going on: charred lemons and traces of stem ginger; although, with time comes gentle, charming honeysuckle.

Auchentoshan 12 Year Taste: Yet another 12-Year-Old, 40%, caramel coloured single malt that’s very thin on the palate. Has the tannins of weak tea, and the barley of supermarket’s own brand cereal. It needs plenty of encouragement to open up, but a classy mulberry flavour can be teased out.

Auchentoshan 12 Year Finish: A long and dry finish, but unfortunately not a pleasant one. There’s maltiness, a touch of honey, but not enough to combat the burnt wholemeal toast. With only a handful of active Lowland Distilleries, I wanted to love Auchentoshan 12 Year but didn’t: Glenkinchie 12 Year is the dram for entry level, lowland lovers.

Flavour 3/10    Value 4/10

Buy Auchentoshan 12 Year Here

Auchentoshan 12 Year Old Whisky Review Lowland Scotch Tasting Notes
Awarded Silver Outstanding Scotch Single Malt – Lowland – 2014 – International Wine & Spirit Competition


Whisky Tasting Notes

Bowmore 12 Year Nose: Steaming citrus Lemsip fighting through a blocked up nose – it’s comforting, but not overwhelmingly endearing. There are some floral notes if you search for them, but they’re more potpourri than a fresh bouquet. This idea of caramelised pineapple and tropical fruit as other’s have suggested was completely lost on me.

Bowmore 12 Year Taste: Surprisingly smooth for its age, with a prompt peppery punch. There’s a lot going on here: smoke from burning heather is carried across Gaelic skies and a prescribed honey lozenge you resent taking is prominent.

Bowmore 12 Year Finish: A bone dry finish, leaving a long ashy residue. There are clear traces of Islay’s trademark peat, but this isn’t cut from the same cloth as Caol Ila or Laphroaig – serve to your non-whisky drinking friends, who won’t know the difference.

Flavour 6/10    Value 8/10

Buy Bowmore 12 Year Whisky Here

Bowmore 12 Year Old Whisky Review Islay Tasting Notes
Awarded Silver Outstanding Scotch Single Malt – Islay – 2014 – International Wine & Spirit Competition