Bunnahabhain was founded in 1881 on the ruggest northeastern coast of the Isle of Islay. Robertson & Baxter in partnership with the Greenlees Brothers incorporated as ' Islay Distillery Company Ltd' and in 1887 became 'Highland Distillers' (a forerunner of Edrington Group). Bunnahabhain has always produced a lot of its whisky to be destined for blending. This includes some world famous blends such as Famous Grouse, Cutty Sark and later, Black Bottle. The distillery (and Black Bottle brand) were bought by Burn Stewart in 2003 and are as of 2013 now owned by South African based Distell.

Bunnahabhain Moine Oloroso

Posted 01 August 2017

As of writing, Bunnahabhain is undergoing a large-scale £11m renovation effort. Wash Still no.1 has had a new Forsyths-made upper half installed, and there are plans to upgrade the distillery buildings and warehouses over the next three years. Whilst described in several places as 'scruffy' I have always found the distillery to exhibit an oddly appealing Victorian workhouse charm - you can read more about that here. In the meantime Bunnahabhain have a range of new and exciting release for us over the next few months to look forward to.

Bunnahabhain Toiteach

Posted 27 April 2017

Bunnahabhain is more commonly known for its lightly peated and unpeated expressions, but over the last few year's they've been experimenting with their 'moine'  ('peat' in Scots Gaelic) and have released a range of whiskies with more of a peaty kick. Today we're taking a look at one of these in the form of the fairly unpronounceable Toiteach ('toch-chach' I'm reliably told).

10.125 Charred sticks in a honey pot

Posted 30 November 2017

The monthly SMWS Bunnahabhain is a peated one this time. Distilled in February 2008 this whisky has spent its life in a refill ex-Bourbon barrel. One of 224 bottles. Lightly Peated profile.

10.128 Sea Salt and Smoked Peppered Almonds

Posted 09 November 2017

A Bunnahabhain that’s certainly ‘Moine’ given the dark green flavour profile colour. Distilled on 10th December 2007, this whisky spent 9 years in an ex-Bourbon hogshead and then was transferred to a 2nd fill toasted oak hogshead. Seeing as it’s still listed as 9 year old, it wasn’t in that toasted jobbie for very long. One of 253 bottles.

10.118 Enthralling Pink and Peat Intensity

Posted 14 August 2017

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society (SMWS) underwent somewhat of a rebrand in time for their 35th Anniversary. Still keeping the distinctive green coloured bottles (they don’t want you judging by the colour of the liquid alone), the labelling introduced a colour-coded system of 12 unique flavour profiles which help to define the style of each dram based on its inherent aromas, flavours and regional characteristics. It’s both useful and attractive.

Bunnahabhain 12 year old

Posted 03 November 2017

Bunnahabhain’s 12 year old was given a welcome makeover in 2010 with the ABV increased up to 46.3%, a move to non-chill filtration and natural colouring, and a new opaque smoked glass bottle design. Recently, the distillery has had a very subtle branding change (they’ve joined up the letters of Bunnahabhain) and introduced the new Stiureadair as, what’s described as a ‘partial replacement’ for the 12 year old – meaning a release of a similar style to ease some of the pressure that is presumably being currently made of their stocks sherry casks. Nevertheless, presently the 12 year old is still readily available.

Bunnahabhain 18 year old

Posted 03 November 2017

Similarly to the Bunnahabhain 12 year old, the 18 year old had its ABV upped to 46.3% and dropped the use of caramel colourant in 2010. Since this relaunch, the bottling has achieved wide-spread acclaim, though that has seen the price rise somewhat – from around £70 in 2016 to nearly to £100 as of writing. Nevertheless, that still remains in the same region as many 18 year olds from other distilleries.

Bunnahabhain 25 year old

Posted 03 November 2017

Bunnahabhain 25 year old is the pinnacle of the distillery’s core range. Already well regarded when it was bottled at 43% like the 12 and 18 year olds, it moved to a new regime of higher ABVs (46.3%), non-chill filtering and natural colouring in 2011. Hoorah. The bottling comes in a very solid alder wood box with hessian lining and brass latches – whilst we’re not here to champion packaging (liquid is our purview), it’s a suitably stylish container for a high-end expression.

Bunnahabhain 35 year old Batch 4

Posted 15 December 2017

Master of Malt really are wonderful chaps – my Bunnahabhain was sadly missing in action from the Boutique-y Advent calendar (accidentally replaced with a duplicate of Saturday’s upcoming dram). A short conversation later, and here it is first thing this morning ready for tasting – thanks guys! This is the oldest Bunna from Boutique-y so far, coming in at 35 years of age – seemingly it wouldn’t have lasted too much longer in the cask as the ABV is right on the cusp at 40.2%.

Bunnahabhain 1973 38 year old

Posted 14 September 2017

Today marks a small landmark for The Dramble – our 100th tasting note. We’ve already had some real highs (Balvenie Tun 1401) and some incredible lows (Fujikai 10 year old) along our journey, but Danny and I would both like to take this opportunity to thank you for all the support you’ve given us since our launch back in April 2017. To celebrate our landmark tasting note, I’ve pulled out something old and interesting for today’s post – Bunnahabhain 1973 38 year old, bottled by Malts of Scotland.