Another budget blend and this time is the Black Bottle. In terms of reputation this fits the typically story of how it used to so good back in the old days from all the opinions I have come across. Unfortunately, I am unable to get hold of an old bottle, well I can from auction but I am not motivated to do so, so I am reviewing the Black Bottle that you will be able to find in some UK supermarkets for under £20. This use to have more peat influence than it does today, hence the fall in reputation but I don’t think this necessarily means that the quality has dropped, maybe it is not tailored so much to peat fans.
Whisky: Black Bottle Blended Malt Scotch Whisky, 40%
Nose: Grain, corn, chocolate, walnuts, roasted peanuts, sherry, coastal sea spray
Taste: Grain, metallic, earth, caramel, butterscotch, roasted peanuts, dark chocolate
Finish: Earth, dark chocolate, corn, roasted peanuts
Summary: Now this may be down to subliminal messages I am getting from the dark glass bottle design but I am certain there is some Bunnahabhain in this. Chocolate and nuts throughout and a nice coastal element in support. The grain is noticeable as well as a metallic note on the initial taste. This tones down a bit after a while and more of the nuts and chocolate come to fore with a coastal finish. For me this has a nice balance of peat/coastal influence and sherry and I can see how this formula is targeted to those that are at neither end of the flavour spectrum of peat or sherry. At under £20 this is good value as it is well balanced and has enough to keep you interested.
Scoring scale: My scores reflect a balance of the overall experience, availability and cost for a whisky,
1 – not to my preference
2 – tastes fine but does not excite me
3 – more to my liking and would revisit occasionally
4 – very much to my liking and would consider as a regular feature on my whisky shelf
5 – permanent feature on my whisky shelf
Image source: www.thewhiskeyexchange.com