Springbank 15 Years Review

Springbank 15 Review

Like many single malt lovers I’m a big fan of the Springbank distillery and the Springbank 15 is one of the reasons I’m such a big fan. Located in the Campbeltown region of Scotland, Springbank is one of the last remaining distilleries in a region that used to have over 30 distilleries and was once the “Whisky Capital Of The World”. You could basically skip from one distillery to the next back in the day.

Today though, there’s no “basically” about it. You actually can skip from one to the other as Glengyle is owned by, and built on the the same property as, Springbank and Glen Scotia is a scant .03 miles away which is a mere 6 minute skip down Lochend St. No, I’ve never been to the ancestral home of the Springbank distillery, I just looked it up on Google maps to see how close it is to Glen Scotia.

Springbank 15 Years Info

Region: Campbeltown, Scotland

Distiller: Springbank
Mashbill: 100% Malted Barley
Cask: ex-Bourbon & ex-Sherry
Age: 15 years
ABV: 46%

PPM: 8

Price: $100

Springbank 15 Years Review

EYE
Honey

NOSE
A bit of sherried malt, fruit, oily nuts, graham, toffee, spice and a bit of smoke and citrus with an earthy underpinning. A lovely dynamic aroma.

PALATE
Sweetly malty with notes of graham crackers, cocoa, spice, ash, nuts and dried fruit accompanying. A bit of earthy peat picks along with some sherry notes up as it heads towards the finish.

FINISH
Long, sweetly malty, fruity, nutty and a bit of smoky char.

BALANCE, BODY & FEEL
Nicely balanced, medium – almost heavy – body and a warm slick feel.

OVERALL
Springbank 15 Years has a fun sweet and earthy aroma; a robust sweet, spicy and earthy palate and a finish that pulls it all together. It’s something that I enjoy drinking, though the $100+ price tag keeps me from picking it up and keeping it at home on a regular basis. I’m not saying it’s a terrible value by any means, I’m just saying there’s whisky I like a bit more that I can pick up for a bit less and so I do. Though if you’ve never tried the Sprinkbank 15 I highly recommend you do.

Springbank 15 isn’t a peated whisky, Springbank 15 isn’t a heavily peated whisky and as such I don’t always pick it up. It seems like some times it contains no peat, sometimes a little and sometimes a “moderately noticeable” amount. I’ve always attributed this variation to leftover peat from a Longrow run or an amount of Longrow malt being used in a batch, but a frequent reader and commenter confirmed it’s a lightly peated malt (~8 PPM like Ardbeg Blasda).

SCORE: 87-89/100 (B+, not consumed at home)

Springbank 15 Review - Score Breakdown
  • Nose - 87
  • Palate - 88
  • Finish - 88
  • Balance, Body & Feel - 87

Summary

Springbank 15 Years is a lovely whisky that might be a tad pricy, but for the most part it’s worth it.

Springbank 15 Label

Josh Peters
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Josh Peters

I read about, think about, write about, and drink whisk(e)y. In short, it's my passion.
Josh Peters
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7 Responses to Springbank 15 Years Review

  1. Springbank is a “peated whisky,” just very lightly so. Something like 8 phenols parts per million, a small amount compared to the Islay whiskies.

    • I always thought it was un-peated like Hazelburn it’s so inconsistent. Sometimes I find a touch of smoke, sometimes I don’t. Figured it was more left over from a Longrow run or something 🙂

      • Springbank distillery, as you seem to know, has three different brands. “Springbank” is lightly peated. “Longrow” is heavily peated. And “Hazelburn” is completely un-peated. If you have noticed peatiness in Hazelburn, that has to be an accident.

  2. correct. Hazelburn is the non-peated brand. Springbank is mildly peated and Longrow is the heavily peated. All from the same distillery.

  3. I like me the 15 alright, but the cask strength 12 beats it by a country mile. Frankly this is a rare case where I find more age doesn’t necessarily equal better, as I think I prefer their 10 yo to the 15 as well. It’s like the distillery character gets a little to masked in Sherry with the 15, whereas with the 10 or 12 the distillate shines through better. Just my two cents.

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