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Friday, March 1, 2024

Benriach 10 year old 2010 SMWS 12.49

Yes, Benriach week concludes with a young 60%abv whisky with a brief second maturation. It also isn't particularly lauded by the Whiskybase crowd. But today is Friday, so I shall embrace questionable choices. Meanwhile, the whisky's finish was in an IPA cask, which can work...

Distillery: Benriach
Current Ownership: Brown-Forman
Owner at time of distillation: Seagram Distillers
Region: Speyside (Lossie)
Bottler: Scotch Malt Whisky Society
Age: 10 years (18 March 2010 - 2021?)
Maturation: refill hogshead for nine years, then one year in a 2nd fill Tempest Old Fashioned IPA barrel
Cask#: 12.49, "Is this the way to Amarillo?"
Outturn: 235 bottles
Alcohol by Volume: 60%
(from a bottle split)


Vanilla and caramel form the top layer of the nose, with mint and eucalyptus in the middle, and weedy hops in the distance. The palate reads like cask strength Canadian Club, mostly ethyl and vanilla. Hints of ginger, lemon, and bitterness decorate the edges. It finishes hot and very sweet, with lots of caramel.

DILUTED to ~50%abv, or 1¼ tsp of water per 30mL whisky

Not much change in the nose, just a little more ginger, confectioner's sugar, and caramel. The palate is sweet and very woody, with tannins coating and drying the tongue. It finishes like a caramel-flavored whisky, with the occasional whiff of mint and tannin in the background.


As referenced above, the whisky is like a high-strength Canadian blend aged in an aggressive first-fill barrel. It's missing the fun oddities of IPAs, instead its just gooey sweet. It's better when neat because it sort of works as a dessert pour, but it's pretty bad once diluted. I guess something had to balance out all those recent 90-point malts.

Availability - Sold out, my condolences
Pricing - $100ish?
Rating - 73 (neat only, low 60s once diluted)