Hunter Laing Benrinnes Tasting Notes

Posted: November 26, 2014 in Benrinnes, Scotch Whisky A-G

Hunter Laing Old Malt Cask Benrinnes 1998(?) (15 year old) 50%

Code: OMC2435/ Dist: 1998(?) Btl: ?/ Tasted: Nov 2014

A beautiful nose of dense, dusty barley and thick, herbal honey. The barley has a lovely sweetness and there are hints of fauna and herbs. With time hints of boiled sweets and perfumed flowers emerges.

The palate is full and robust. The honey liberally cotes the mouth. Dusty spices mingle with dusty oak and a touch of citrus comes through on the middle with a light herbaceousness. Wonderfully balanced and long with the citrus and mineral notes lingering along with that honey.

Hunter Laing Old Malt Cask Benrinnes 1995 (19 year old) 50%

Bourbon/ Code: OMC2386/ Dist: May 1995 Btl: June 2014/ Tasted: July 2014

A herbal and malty nose with bake fruit, succulent honey and a light sherbet dusting. Grainy rye-like spices emerge along with a slight floral note and some buttery oak. Quite sweet but fairly appealing nevertheless.

The palate is fuller than the nose suggests with malt, coffee soaked baked fruit and soft earthy (slightly musty) spice on the middle. Short and a little tart with a lightly coffee’d after-taste.

Hunter Laing Old Malt Cask Benrinnes 1997 (19 year old) 50%

Refill Bourbon Hogshead/ Code: OMC2626/ Dist: Oct 1997 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Mar 2017

The nose is a little hot and straw-like with white fruit, barley and hints of strawberry and raspberry boiled sweets. With time there’s even a decaying rose petal note. One gets the impression that this is a bit too old.

The palate opens with some pleasant white fruit, citrus, barley, sweet oak and sweet berry notes. The balance is better, but it still has a slight confected character. Hot and tart finish with a light chocolate-malt after-taste.


Hunter Laing Hepburns Choice Benrinnes 2009 (6 year old) 46%

Sherry/ Quarter Cask Finished

Code: HEP0108/ Dist: Jan 2009 Btl: Sept 2015/ Tasted: Oct 2015

Quite an earthy and manure nose with plenty of sherried dried fruit, cinnamon and liquorice.

The palate is full and sherried with liquorice, dried plummy fruit and citrus. In fact the middle is very citric and cleansing but the treacly sherry returns along with a touch of burnt wood.

Hunter Laing Hepburns Choice Benrinnes 2009 (6 year old) 46%

Sherry/ Quarter Cask Finished

Dist: Jan 2009 Btl: Oct 2015/ Code: HEP0106/ Tasted: Nov 2015

Aromas of thick, herbal, treacly sherry with hints of smoke and citrus. Huge slabs of malt, prunes and walnuts with a light balsamic and creamy coffee note.

Soft and coffee’d on the palate with pruney, winey, thick and malty sherry. Hints of dark toffee and lightly bittering spice appears. Medium length with succulent orange notes amid the bitter, drying wood notes.

Hunter Laing Hepburns Choice Benrinnes 2009(?) (6 year old) 46%

Sherry/ Dist: 2009(?) Btl: Oct 2015/ Code: HEP0107/ Tasted: Nov 2015

A sulphur and brimstone nose with burnt earth and toffee. Hard and unyielding, lightly herbal with raisinated fruit.

The palate is hard and not quite as sulphured as the nose with raisinated fruit, prune and walnuts. Short, hot, sulphured, bitter finish.

Hunter Laing Hepburns Choice Benrinnes 2010 (7 year old) 46%

Refill Bourbon Hogshead/ Code: HEP0266/ Dist: Feb 2010 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: July 2017

Aromatic barley, honey and sweet on the nose with a touch of citrus, herbs and an underlying mineral crispness. With time the white fruits taken on an Alsace-like quality.

The palate opens with granulated sugar coated white fruit and apricot. In fat it’s very sweet and sugary with sweet barley, sweet oak and more sweet fruit. The alcohol enhanced citrus and mineral notes come through on the middle and offset most of the sweetness and stays the same through the finish, although the granuated sugar notes creep back.

Hunter Laing Hepburns Choice Benrinnes 2009 (8 year old) 46%

Wine Finished/ Code: HEP0293/ Dist: Jan 2009 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Nov 2017

A dusty and chalky nose with barley and industrial notes. The creamy vanilla oak balances and with time hints of citrus and grass appear.

The palate displays hard barley, toffee, vanilla, earth and gritty tannins. Hard and industrial finish with lingering rough spice. The wine cask certainly has covered up the industrial character.

Hunter Laing Hepburns Choice Benrinnes 2002 (11 year old) 46%

Code: HEP0037/ Dist: Dec 2002 Btl: June 2014/ Tasted: July 2014

Sharp citrus aromas to begin with followed by grainy oak and a touch of macerated summer fruit and barley. With time the oak becomes quite fragrant and creamy.

The palate is light and oily with caramel, toasted toffee and hints of barley. Pleasant citrus twist on the finish.

Hunter Laing Hepburns Choice Benrinnes 2002 (11 year old) 46%

Sherry/ Code: HEP0008/ Dist: Dec 2002 Btl: ?/ Tasted: Sept 2015

Edgy herbal honey with boiled sweet sherry aromas. A touch of ‘Toshan-like rose Turkish delight appears along with some fragrant smoke. It becomes rather sweet with time.

The palate is earthy with a slight spritzy lemonade like character, which is a little odd. Slightly industrial with hints of barley and spice. Medium length with the industrial notes lingering with some Turkish delight attempting to soften.


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