Scotch whisky distillery Benriach has turned up the peat with the release of its ‘most intensely smoked’ single malt to date.
Although not typically associated with Speyside, the achieves at Benriach indicate that heavily peated single malts were widespread in the region during the 19th century. Their latest release, Smoke Season, pays homage to a time of year where peated spirit runs through its stills.
“Smoke Season is a special time of year in the distillery’s calendar,” said. Rachel Barrie, master blender at Benriach Distillery, “and this new addition gives both the whisky novice and connoisseur the opportunity to discover the uniquely rich, sweet and smoky character of Benriach single malt, crafted in Speyside, a whisky-making region rarely associated with peated malt.”
Matured in two different casks – American virgin oak and Bourbon barrels, the new Smoke Season whisky has been described as both ‘intensely smoked’ and sweet.
“With intensely peated spirit batch distilled every year, at Benriach we never stop exploring how the fruit and smoke aromatics intertwine and mature in a range of eclectic oak casks, either amplifying or transforming the perception of peat,” Barrie continued.
“Smoke Season is the result of exploring 100% intensely peated malt, batch distilled and matured in first-fill Bourbon barrels combined with a high proportion of charred and toasted American virgin oak casks.
“Crafted exclusively from intensely peated malt distilled in Smoke Season, the spirit is reminiscent of barbecue smoked fruit in a pine forest. American virgin oak and Bourbon barrel maturation develops sweet caramel smoke and cinnamon-spiced roasted apple, with hints of charred orange peel and hickory, concentrated at the bottling strength of 52.8% ABV.”
Smoke Season will be available gradually in global markets from February.
For more information, go to benriachdistillery.com