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Springbank 14 yo (1998/2013, Whiskybroker, 54,3%)

The supreme Davide Terziotti, at the end of the last Milano Whisky Festival, was radiant: not because he was drunk (well informed sources say he doesn’t touch a drop of alcohol even by mistake, his interest in whisky is purely academic), but because he had sold a quantity of this Springbank that you can’t even imagine. We were curious, so with only the strength of our tears we begged a sample to review it calmly, and after thanking the master (thank you, master!) here we are: single cask first fill ex-bourbon cask #448, bottled at cask strength just a few months ago. Colour: golden.

40070

N: very open, it smells like a 40% bottling! A whisky that lives on strong emotions that counterpoint each other. The sweetness given by the barrel is full and delicious (marshmallow, vanilla, coconut cake); then, beautiful fruity notes (peach juice, yellow plum, maybe even pulpy mango?). Opposite, stands a wall of the best Springbank clichés, with an intense but not excessive peat smoke, with a nice minerality; and then, what a citrusy soul!, between lemon and orange juice. Finally, a spicy suggestion (nutmeg) and even herbaceous notes of dried flowers. With time, the balance seems to tend towards ‘sweetness’…

P: Davide praised its oiliness on the palate, and in fact the entrance is dominated by this sensation, with suggestions almost like wax. Then there is a nice surprise: the sweetness here is late to impose itself, leaving the scene to a lemony and citrusy jubilation. However, it’s austere and elegant, but – mind you – neither limp nor naked. Secondly, moreover, a sweetness similar to the nose returns, among sugar / vanilla / fruit. Everything plays on a smoked mat, with few surprises of salt and pepper.

F: it becomes bitter, more peaty, more acrid, more vegetable. Still a lot of lemon; nicely long and intense (still peppery smoke).

And in short, bravo Davide: you have chosen a good Springbank. Very good. It combines perfectly, and in a dynamic but harmonious way, the peculiarities of the distillery with those of the cask; the vote can only be a full and round 90/100. But listen, you haven’t got a drop left…?

Recommended soundtrack: Little JoyNo one’s better sake.

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