Bunnahabhain 12 years is the standard bottling for Bunnahabhain and it’s a wonderful whisky that shows the beauty of a well crafted spirit. Founded in 1881 Bunnahabhain resides on the the north end of Islay, along with Caol Ila, and is a beautifully done, un-peated, style of Islay whisky. It’s a distillery that seems to be doing better and better things as the years go on.
They release NAS whiskies that are actually pretty good (we’ll do those at some future point in time) and in 2010 instead do reducing their proof from 43% they did the opposite and increased it! Some bottlings were 40%, but a good amount were 43 and regardless they all got upgraded to 46.3% and if they were chill-filtered before they no longer were. That’s right, everything Bunnahabhain does right now is bottled at 46.3%, non-chill filtered and at least the Bunnahabhain 12 years is natural in color. How cool is that? This is how whisky should be done.
Bunnahabhain 12 years Info
Region: Islay, Scotland
Mashbill: 100% Malted Barley
Cask: ex-bourbon & ex-sherry
Age: 12 years
Non-Chill Filtered | Natural Color
Bunnahabhain 12 years Review
Earthy malt, apple cider spice, sherry-like dried dark fruit, cocoa and a frosting sweetness with a touch of orange peels. This would make one hell of a dessert.
Earthy malt, sherry, apple cider, cocoa, dried fruit, frosting sweetness and bits of butterscotch, orange peels, nuts and a touch of smoke make for an interesting flavor profile.
Long fruity fade complimented with notes of malt, cocoa, spice and a touch of smoky char.
BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Great balance, round full body and a heavy oily feel.
Bunnahabhain 12 years is great. I could drink this any day without question! It’s balanced, it has a decent complexity, it carries a nice weight from being non-chill filtered and it’s delivered at 46.3% which is perfect for sipping. This is just an all around nice whisky and I’m a bit upset at myself for taking this long to get to it for a serious review.
It’s fascinating just how much the Bunnahabhain 12 years is improved over the G&M Bunnahabhain 8 years; side by side they don’t really feel like the same whisky. If I were tasting them blind I don’t know if I’d guess that they were from the same distillery. This is a good, tasty, standard release from an under-appreciated Islay distillery.
SCORE: 87/100 (B+)
Bunnahabhain 12 Reviews - Score Breakdown
- Nose - 87
- Palate - 87
- Finish - 87
- Balance, Body & Feel - 86
Bunnahabhain 12 years is a great dram from a good distillery and well worth its asking price.