SMWS 36.161 Honey and herbs on ham

Posted 04 July 2019 by Matt / In Benrinnes
The Dramble reviews SMWS 36.161 Honey and herbs on ham

Bottle Name: 36.161 Honey and herbs on ham

ABV: 58.9%
Distillery: Benrinnes
Bottler: Scotch Malt Whisky Society
Flavour Profile: Deep, rich & dried fruits
Region: Speyside

Whilst not sherried (drawn from a refill ex-bourbon hogshead), sherry fans should certainly keep an eye on this 12 year old bottling that’s within the Deep, Rich & Dried Fruit profile. View on SMWS

Nose: Toffee, maple syrupy, honeycomb and soft-peaked meringue sit with roast potatoes, beef dripping and cornbread. In the background, freshly sliced ham, crème brulee and a scattering of brown sugar. Quite a strange selection – but it works exceedingly well and gives a sherried feeling without any actual sherry being present. Dilution introduces immediate coffee beans alongside beef stock and boiled vegetables.

Taste: Syrupy and oily in texture. Burnt caramel and panna cotta are joined by waffles, brown sugars and reduced plums – almost jammy. Lightly tanned leather and honey-roasted ham sit with Victoria sponge cake, whilst gentle pepper simmers in the back-palate. Water brings out coffee grounds and further meatiness alongside chocolate covered biscuits.

Finish: Medium with pepper and dusty chocolate.

The underlying profile of Benrinnes (to my palate, reduced sugars with roasted meats) is excellently represented in this tasty and well-balanced Society bottlings. If you’ve yet to experience Benrinnes’s ability to mimic sherried influences without the presence of any sherry this would be an great introduction. For those who are seasoned hands, this is simply a good’un.

Score: 87/100


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