The Ben Nevis 10 Year was introduced to the market back in 1996 using whisky produced in 1986, the last year that Long John International produced whisky at Ben Nevis distillery. In Jim Murray’s “Whisky Bible 2004” he says this:- ‘such a massive introduction to the palate: soft oils, citrus notes and very big oak on the malt, but sweet enough to chew forever; the integration of the oak really makes for some finish: long, hints of bitter roast coffee against the sweet oils; the nose makes you say oh-oh, but you need a knife, fork spoon and napkin for the taste’.
This malt was awarded a grand gold medal by Monde Selection in 1999 and again in 2000. It also won a gold medal in 2001 and a trophy for three consecutive years of being awarded gold and grand gold medals. They were also awarded a silver medal by Monde Selection for this product in 2003.
Tasing notes -
Nose - A heavier, earthier aroma than might expect from a 10 year old Ben Nevis with the subtlest peaty note and a big oaky presence. The tell-tale sprig o'mint remains in place, though it plays second fiddle to a sweet, roasty maltiness.
Taste - Immediate deep oakiness offers enormous substance from the off. This is perhaps the most chewable 10 year highlander on the market and only towards the middle does the intensity of the toasty malt die enough to allow the complexities to unravel. The sweetness offered is of a demerara quality and the gentle spices are softened by the suprisingly peaty blanket in which they are wrapped. Typically mouth filling, with an almost rum-like rich estery quality which guarantees a big, fattish mouth feel.
Finish - Long and tapering sweet. Lots of vanilla clings on as the oak softens and just the merest hint of malty peatiness survives for the drying, lingering finale. Brooding stuff.
Distillery comments - Nosed blind, you would be convinced this is a 15 or 16 year old, such is the oaky presence. To taste is no different. The casks selected for this filling must have been of the highest quality as the whisky has matured at a prodigious rate - either that or Forth William has been suffering successive heatwaves. Wonderfully balanced malt to be savoured at lenght.
Tasting Notes of Nikka the Chief Blender
Colour - Slightly deep amber.
Nose - Rich and characteristic. Fruity and sweet. Orange, banana, freen of green leaves.
Body - Full.
Taste - Rich taste, nuts, toast, dried fruit, vanilla
Finish - Tickness, oak, robust cheese.