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BenRiach 2010 Càrn Mòr Speyside 8-Year

46% ABV - Speyside

Nose: Fairly light and juicy, with red fruits, dried fruit leathers, cherry, light smattering of raisin, and faint or background citrus and vanilla. Slight cereal sweetness to it.

Taste: The sweetness hits first with spices, marmalade, red fruit compote, and pepper.

Finish: Red fruits, orchard fruits, and spice lead the finish. Medium length. Hints of honey.

The flavours are fairly intense, but remain clean and understandable. This dram is so juicy that it feels like the flavours are rushing away, and will leave just the malted spirit-driven flavours behind… but they stay... huzzah! As I get into this one over the next few minutes, I start to wonder if the intensity of sweetness will actually wear on my palate. This is certainly a prime example of a whisky meant to be an aperitif.

I have really been admiring the recent ex-Sherry releases under the Càrn Mòr label. The team behind the recent 2020 bottlings of Ben Nevis, this BenRiach, and, from what I hear, the Caol Ila, have been on fire.

This bottle here is my fourth acquisition under the independent label Càrn Mòr. If you are taking a chance for your purchase (i.e. buying a whisky without tasting it first), then it’s a safe bet to stick with a release from Càrn Mòr. The younger releases–those under 15-years–tend to be very accessible and priced very reasonably. In the last couple weeks there have been a few new releases, and I am looking forward to finding them on shelves. This one did score higher than I would have imagined, but, after breaking it down component by component (for nose, taste, finish, overall), this BenRiach Càrn Mòr stays strong and consistent. Top marks!

Details: Distilled 2010, Bottled 2019. Matured in a Sherry Butt; 824 Bottles from 1 Cask.

Tasted 12 October 2020. (Posted 12 October 2020.)

92/100
Detailed Rating Information...

90+: Fantastic whisky; highly recommended. My favourite whiskies – I might have more than one bottle if the price is right and the supply is limited! The higher values in this range will reflect a stronger balance and consistency between components.
85-89: Great whisky; recommended. Whiskies that really tick the flavour boxes and you'll likely hear about these from me. Great bottles to have stocked at all times.
80-84: Very good whisky; recommended, but still consider trying before you buy. Anything is this range or above I would gladly order at a restaurant or buy a bottle.
75-79: Good whisky; consider trying before you buy. These are whiskies that I enjoyed drinking, but likely would reach for another bottle from the shelf or select something different to order.
65-74: Average; consider trying before you buy, but not recommended. There is nothing that stood out about this whisky and I might be inclined to mix it with soda or in a cocktail, instead of trying to enjoy its own flavours.
50-64: Bad; not recommended.


Whisky Bottle