Brenne 10 Review

Brenne 10 Review

Brenne 10 is the older, and higher proofed, sibling of the original Brenne which has been a divisive dram in the whisky world. Some people absolutely love it while others, like myself, can’t stand it and I think a lot of it comes down to if you’re a sweet person or not. Me, I’m salty-savory which is why I like big oaky bourbons, peated islay whisky and darker unpeated malts like Criagellachie.

My liking of the darker, earthier side of whisky has set a precedence and when I find myself liking a sweeter lighter whisky and scoring it highly I find readers of this blog are surprised. It’s not that I don’t like lighter fruitier whiskies, it’s just that they often lack depth and balance. Which is my main complaint about the Brenne line. While it is deeply sweet that’s all it is and doesn’t register as balanced which I’ll write a bit more about in the Brenne 10 review below.

Brenne 10 Info

Region: France

Distiller: Brenne
Mashbill: 100% Malted Barley
Cask: ex-Cognac
Age: 10 years
ABV: 48%

Price: $100

Brenne 10 Review

EYE
Nectarine juice

NOSE
The aroma is a fruit salad of bananas, apricots, raisins, passion fruit and guava layered bubblegum and topped with vanilla frosting and Froot Loops. It’s so sweet it comes across more like a fortified dessert wine than a whisky to me.

PALATE
Like the nose the palate is heavy with notes of fruit salad, bubblegum and vanilla, but here that fruity sweetness gets a sugary bump from some birthday cake and a wee bit of an acetone bite towards the end.

FINISH
Short and fruity with a bit of vanilla, butterscotch ice cream and Dimeatapp style grapiness.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Off balanced from the sweetness that has no counter to it, medium body and an syrupy feel.

OVERALL
Brenne 10 is better than the original Brenne which is among my least favorite single malts out there due to its intense sweetness. I’m not a fan of sweet things in general and the saccharine nature of the Brenne 10 and the original just don’t do it for me. All I ever taste is the overly sweet fruitiness from the sopping wet barrels they use to age their whisky in; it completely covers up anything I could really call “whisky flavors”.

I know some people really enjoy this whisky, the always amazing Coopered Tot for example, but Brenne isn’t my cup of whisky. I don’t find balance, I don’t find dimension and most importantly of all I don’t find any malt in this whisky. To me the whole thing just comes across as fruit salad and bubblegum with some vanilla frosting and that’s not what I want to drink. Allison is obviously doing well and has found her niche, but it’s 100% obvious at this point that I’m not, and will likely never be, part of that niche.

SCORE: 76/100

*Disclosure: This sample of Brenne 10 was graciously sent to me by the company for the purposes of this review. The views, opinions, and tasting notes are 100% my own.

Brenne 10 Review - Score Breakdown
  • Nose - 76
  • Palate - 76
  • Finish - 76
  • Balance, Body & Feel - 76

Summary

Brenne 10 is a saccharine french single malt priced at premium Scotch and Bourbon levels and for my money isn’t a great value. But if you love intensely sweet and fruity beverages then this might be right up your alley.

Brenne 10 Label

Josh Peters
Connect

Josh Peters

I read about, think about, write about, and drink whisk(e)y. In short, it's my passion.
Josh Peters
Connect

2 Responses to Brenne 10 Review

  1. Nice to see a review of this, Josh. I was looking for “something different” for a gathering of a group of friends who aren’t whisky geeks and this was recommended. It fits that bill, as it does not taste like a whisky, at all. It is very sweet, with a cocoa finish that was pleasant. If I had tried this blind, I likely would have guessed it was a brandy and never would have guessed a finished single malt.

    On another note, I would recommend making sure to empty the bottle within the first week of it being open. After a couple of weeks of being open with a 70% fill level, my bottle has developed a significant amount of bitter alcohol in the palate. Hopefully, it is just a phase of its oxidization and will subside into a better integrated whisky, but I guess I will find out.

    Keep up the good work! 🙂

    • Thanks Abe and thanks for sharing. I have a bottle of the regular Brenne that’s taken me over a year to slowly make my way through and it had the same issue, but in the case of the younger Brenne it just kept devolving month over month. It’s definitely a whisky that doesn’t do well with oxygen.

Leave a reply

Send this to a friend