Wednesday, 8 December 2010

Bushmills 12 Years Old Distillery Reserve


10 years in Bourbon, 2 in sherry. 40% ABV, 70cl. £37.50.

I’m going back to writing about the whiskey in a less structured way. I can write my pretentious opinions without having to put it in headings…. Anyhoo… on with the pretentious opinions.

The 12YO Bushmills distillery reserve has always struck me as a little bit of a gimmick, as the whiskey is only available at the distillery. In all fairness, most distilleries now do a distillery reserve, but in the interests of capitalism, alcoholism and other ‘ism’s I think they should all be available on the open market (admittedly this would completely defeat the point of a distillery reserve).

The unreasonable paradoxical opinions aside, the distillery reserve is an extremely well balanced whiskey. The nose starts off with a massive hit of marzipan and honey. This stuff noses like diabetes in a glass. Once the immediate but suddenly forgivable cloying sweetness is gone, the more complex rum and raisin ice cream whiffs are in tow. Last nosing before tasting smells slightly of suede. First tasting is akin to digestive biscuits. This soon gives away to a nicely balanced sherry taste and a quite nice oakey finish.

This is mildly more buttery and slightly higher quality finish than the 10 Year old. The fact that you can have your name printed on the bottle and that it’s a distillery reserve means that it’s a cynical marketing exercise, but for now we’ll judge it as a whiskey. 7.5 / 10

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