Springbank 23 Years Old WhiskyNerds Cask 63 48% 1995
€ 1.700,00 (in Vat)
|Cask Type||Fresh Sherry Hogshead|
When I recently wrote that Springbank is not always successful in selecting good sherry casks, I got a slightly worried message from one of the WhiskyNerds in Holland who had just sent me a sample of… a sherried Springbank. Of course we trust their selection skills when it comes to this distillery, so no need to worry.
It is a Springbank 1995 matured in a fresh sherry hogshead.
Nose: yay. Starts on a beautiful mixture of minty old wood, a slightly sour tobacco note and a bit of rancio. Gorgeous. Then fragrant fruits, like waxed orange skin, a hint of redcurrant and tangerines. Subtle lychee. Still gorgeous. Some leather. Whiffs of dusty books, which I find pleasant, and rapeseed oil. Cocoa and touches of metal polish too. Mouth: somehow a fairly thin texture, but very flavoursome, both nutty and fruity (walnuts, mirabelles, sour cherries), always with this slightly nervous undertone of lemon and sour wood. Hints of gas and coal smoke in the background, giving it a bit of a pre-war whisky profile. Brass polish again. Soft briney notes (Manzanilla). Menthol and exotic woods, as well as a light hint of espresso. Finish: long, very old-style, with sherry, sandalwood, the lightest smoke and resin.
Pretty amazing Springbank, which reflects bygone times in a way. Let’s hope there’s more of this.
Serge Valentin (89)
High hopes here.
Colour: deep amber.
Nose: it’s a heavy one, with high cask extraction, this very typical sulphury side, roasted chestnuts, notes of new tyres, old chestnuts, heavy pipe tobacco, fresh moist pumpernickel, and simply loud bone-dry oloroso. Right, perhaps half a prune.
Mouth: indeed, this is pretty extreme, now mentholy, tarry, with loads of marmalade, prunes, old Armagnac, fruitcake, chalk, some slightly sulphury kind of paraffin, plasticine (remember when we used to eat some at kindergarten?) Some espresso too. Whether the distillate is still detectable is not very obvious, but we’ll say ‘yes’. Black Corinthian currants, some lovage.
Finish: long, rather dry, thick, extremely oloroso-y.
Comments: perhaps not exactly my favourite style because of the heavy extractiveness but it’s some kind of wrestler! Imagine this at 60% vol.! Also, it’s not got the immaculate complexity of the most famous sherry-monstrous Springbanks (such as Samaroli’s old 12) but it insatiably roars and kicks with much gusto. It was probably a good idea to bring it down to 48% vol...Actually, it was bottled at cask strength.
Gal Granov (94)
Very old fashioned style sherry. If I didn’t know any better I’d say this could be that slightly sooty style of 1960s Strathisla that’s so amazing. Funky with a whiff of overripe mango, pine needles and resin, and a hint of Maggi liquid seasoning. Some oily concrete, like the flooring in a car workshop, with berries. Strange as it is.
A lot more gentle than you’d expect from the intensity of the nose. Old polished furniture, wet soil, dunnage warehouses. Dry sherry, mint and pine, and menthol cigarettes. Some peppery heat, with Maggi again. Sesam seed oil, strawberries, maybe a touch of balsamic vinegar. Sour cherries, sandalwood, dark chocolate.
A silky smooth finish with dark chocolate, Maggi and resin. A slight crisp note of menthol with the ashy addition of cigarrette ash. Drying with oak, dunnage-warehouse-soil, and engine oil. Sandalwood and sour cherries.
This is yet another A. MA. ZING whisky. I am absolutely in love with this. It does everything right and it goes full on the complex sherry and the dirty notes that Springbank is so loved for.
I wouldn’t say this is a typical Springbank, although the style of ‘dirtiness’ is typical, but overall this reminds me more of 1960 Strathisla and some older Karuizawas. Stunning whisky, and a shame it’s gone.
Words Of Whisky:
Incredible stuff that harkens back to the 1960s. A flavour profile you don't often encounter anymore.
Very mature and rich, a somewhat dry sherry style. Cherry syrup, raisins, juicy plums and dark notes of tobacco leaves. A hint of mocha and chocolate pralines, with a whisper of menthol, soy and wood smoke. Brilliant, in the vein of those old sherried Speysiders that G&M bottles every so often.
Furniture polish, leather and hints of menthol. This is just... incredibly awesome. Hints of espresso and cappuccino, with the tiniest whisper of peat, and lovely earthy dunnage flavours. A hint of cocoa powder also.
Lingering menthol, peat, sherry. A touch of soy. Very long.