Number 21 sees Aberlour A’bunadh Batch 42. Excellent stuff!
I had a bottle of batch 18 and loved the huge burnt christmas cake notes, so needless to say, I was looking forward to seeing how this famous bargain dram has evolved.
Here are the dramstats:
- ABV 60.3%
- Price £40
Nose: Huge alcohol burn and uh oh, that unpleasant “something” from my recent review of highland park 12 is there. It’s clearly fruity but this baby needs water. Once the water is added there is sherry soaked dried fruit and pepper. The characteristic Aberlour red apples, then raisins and sultanas all seem to be there. But this harsh unpleasant something is not going away with dilution. I’m starting to think this is sulphur 😦
Palate: Without water it’s sweet, fruity, juicy, then burns! Seems quite young. Not really one for drinking neat for me. With water, sweet sherry fruit and spicy with crackling pepper, juicy apples and black grape. Almost a fruit punch quality to this.
Finish: Peppery then drying. With water much more sweet christmas cake and a real burst of dried fruit. It takes a lot of water and still delivers that burst on the finish, with red gooseberries. The fruit keeps coming!
Verdict: Thank goodness this dram redeemed itself on the palate. Lots of fruit and really exciting. I still don’t know if the nose burn is sulphur or not, but it doesn’t go away with water and it ruins the nose for me. For that reason I wouldn’t buy this batch and that’s a pity. I’ve rented a cottage in Aberlour for a week in Feb and had planned on coming back with a drop of A’bunadh. These things vary quite a lot from batch to batch, so I’ll be trying new batches and waiting for one that ticks the boxes, because when it does, it’s a real cracker!