Thursday, 01 April 2021 16:48 Written by
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Single Malt Scotch Whisky

Single Malt Scotch Whisky

40% ABV
Chill Filtered
Colour Adjusted
Additional Info Below

Our Score

Value Score

From the Distillery Website

We're not your typical whisky. Born in the 1970's, we're proud to stand from the crowd . Why not take a walk on the wildside, not a dram by the fireside. With notes of soft red apples, sweet runny honey, delicate smoke and toffee. The perfect pairing of peat and sweet. The new single malt on the block for a new generation of drinkers. Allt-A-Bhainne, the sweetly peated single malt since 1975...

Our Review (Click to expand)
Review 116 2nd April 2021 (Good Friday)

In March, I put out a poll on Twitter, to see which whisky region I should concentrate my reviews on for April - Islay / Campbeltown / Speyside
Speyside was the clear winner. If you don't follow my Twitter, I would love to see you give me a follow, you can find me @WhiskyResource

The first whisky we will be reviewing for Speyside month is Allt-A-Bhainne Single Malt Whisky, this is from a bottle that was purchased for me as a present, I have had it almost 3 years and the fact I haven't yet finished it gives more insight into how my palate has changed and the extended choice I now have for whisky, than the actual quality of the whisky itelf. If you haven't see the YouTube review (Below) there is probably 2 large measures left.

So Allt-A-Bhainne, however it may be pronounced, is a non age statement single malt whisky, distilled on Speyside and owned by the Chivas Group, who intern are part of the Pernod Ricard Group. It is bottled at 40% ABV, is, as far as we can see, both chill filtered and colour adjusted, on these two points, there is no mention on the website, bottle or else where in the internet about this, in fact there is very little information. We don't know the cask maturation type, however, suspect it is ex-bourbon.

It is a sweet peat and smoke whisky, they even mention on the bottle about how the sweet Speyside style combined with peat is something that in the 1970s was considered something that would not work, maybe a marketing thing? probably, but they do admit on the website at least via suggestion, that this whisky was made for mixing.

With respect to prices, it appears completely out of stock everywhere online, there maybe the odd physical retail store still holding stock, when it was available, it was widely available in supermarkets such as Tesco and Sainsbury. It did retail for around £31.90.

We have made some adjustments to our value score. After some analysis of our database, we considered that non-age statement whisky often scored very closely to age statement whisky but also carrying the same specifications such as being 40% ABV, Chill Filtered and Coloured. As a NAS whisky is more than likely a lot younger than a 10 Year Old for example, we decided to try and widen that gap a little, so we have adjusted the formula for how a NAS is value scored, we have started to update those scores on the searchable database. This whisky achieves a value score of 78.78 out of 100. Remember the value score is the same for every whisky in how it is applied. It uses the average price of a whisky across upto 4 large retailers for a 700ml bottle, then factors in the specifications of Age, ABV, chill filtration and colour. Each specification has a weight applied to it which is then applied. If the whisky is additionally cask strength and or single cask, that carries additional weighting.
This means that a whisky priced at £50, non aged statement, 40% ABV, chill filtered and colour adjusted, not cask strength or single cask, will score, rightly, significantly less than a whisky priced at £50, carrying an age statement, non chill filtered and natural colour and be both cask strength at for example 55% and single cask.
You are getting more value for your money for the later example than the former, however, it does not take into account the subjective nose and taste, here we take the value score and try to consider if we would buy the whisky based on our enjoyment.

On the nose, it is sweet, there is a very obvious peat twang which is also carrying its own sweetness. There are notes of vanilla, toffee and some smoke.

On the palate, it is very sweet, very much a candy sweet, with apple, honey and toffee. There is a sweet peat in addition to the speyside character. Its not too heavy a peat and smoke level when compared to some Islay whiskies such as Laphroaig, however, it certainly is not a beginner for its peat or smoke character. It doesnt offer any complexity and agree that maybe mixing is a good purpose for it. Its not an everyday sipper either.

While it is not terrible, when you consider buying a peated whisky for mixing, we would consider as a first port of call, buying a budget supermarket Islay, usually for around £20. We wouldn't buy another bottle, however, the level of sweetness and peat would appeal to a specific audience. For an overall score, we give this 82 out of 100.

Our YouTube Review

Additional Info

  • Country: Scotland
  • Region: Highland (Speyside)
  • Age Statement: Non Age Statement
  • Chill Filtered: Chill Filtered (CF)
  • Colour Status: Colour Adjusted
  • ABV: 40%
  • Cask Strength: No
  • Colour: Golden shimmer
  • Peated / Smoke: Light Peat/Smoke
  • Cask Finish / Maturation: Ex-Bourbon Maturation
  • Single Cask: No
  • Mash Bill: Barley
  • Bottle Sizes: 700ml
  • Bottler: Distillery Bottling
  • Whisky Experience Level: Intermediate
  • Average Price (or RRP): £32.90
  • Value Score: 78.78
  • Our Score: 82
  • Ownership: Pernod Ricard
  • Bottle Stopper: Natural Cork
  • Brand: Allt-a-bhainne
  • Packaging: No Packaging
  • Category: Single Malt
Read 1576 times Last modified on Friday, 14 May 2021 14:33

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