Bored stiff with the drudgery of day to day life, I realized, just the other day, that I hadn’t actually been in central Edinburgh – Old Town and the Royal Mile in particular – for at least a month, maybe two. It’s a realization that tends to dawn on me a couple of times a year as I rarely have any real reason to go there, yet every time I do go I swear to myself that I must make the 15 minute bus journey more often. The more cynical reader may think that this post has been sponsored by VisitScotland, which unfortunately it hasn’t, but I honest to God don’t think I have ever been in a more picturesque city. It’s absolutely beautiful.
It was during this visit to old town that I found myself in the tourist mecca of whisky which is the Edinburgh Whisky Experience. I didn’t do the full tour, mind, just browsed the shop for a bit, and while doing so I overheard a tourist – southern European of some description – asking for a good “spyside whisky”. I sniggered with the undeserved smugness of someone who speaks only the one language, whilst continuing to listen in to the conversation to see what the shop assistant would recommend – much to my surprise they didn’t go for Aberlour, Dalwhinnie or even Glenfiddich, but Benromach! Specifically Benromach Traditional – which, at that time, I had never actually tried. This was a situation which needed to be rectified swiftly.
And rectified it was, that very same day. A bottle of Benromach Traditional will set you back about £25, making it rather affordable. For anyone interested in finding out just a little bit more about the distillery, and reading about another expression of theirs, let me direct you attention towards my previous review of their 10 year old bottling. Now let’s take a sniff: this is definitely a light whisky, that much is obvious from the start, and every single element of its aroma is light as well – light smoke, light peat, a small pinch of peppery spice, a shy bit of vanilla and fruity citrus sweetness. Nothing stands out, and I find myself wanting just a bit more of everything.
The palate, again, is light – very light. That same light peat and smoke is there, as is the shy bit of vanilla, though the spice is a bit more pronounced than on the nose. Very similar to the nose indeed, and unfortunately it suffers – in my opinion – from the same issues as well. It just leaves you wanting a little bit more. What is there is far from bad, don’t get me wrong, and that’s precisely why you want a bit more of it. Regardless, I would definitely recommend that you splash out an extra £5-6 and get yourself a bottle of the Benromach 10 instead. Alternatively, if you’re looking for an interesting bottle and don’t want to spend more than £25, I’d recommend you consider Old Pulteney; not because they’re all that similar, mind, but because it’s interesting.
Colour: Light gold.
Nose: Light smoke, peat, pinch of peppery spice, shy vanilla, some fruity citrus sweetness.
Taste: Similar to nose, light peat and smoke, shy vanilla, a bit more spice.