Braeval (1995/2012) Ian Mcleod

Enter the Raspberry

From the renowned Scottish bottler Ian Mcleod, comes my second entry for the Speyside distillery of Braeval, formerly-known as Braes of Glenlivet. Today’s dram is a vatting of two casks of whisky finished in Barolo wine barrels. Wondering what the influence of this great Italian wine might be on this obscure Scot? So did the good people of Ian Mcleod, when they married barley and Nebbiolo grape..

BraevalDescription: distilled in 1995 , matured for 16 years in casks #90571 + 72 with a Barolo wine finish, bottled in 2012 for the Chieftain range of indy bottler Ian Mcleod at 48.0% ABV.

Nose: opening on raspberry vinegar, factory glue, a touch of tar and sulphur, very well integrated with a side note of toffee.

Mouth: a full and round body, with a sharp black pepper palate, cutting very fine on the tongue. A whole grain toast with sea salt, raspberry jam, rubber and smoke.

Finish: short’ish and bitter, coffee, red wine with a touch of rubber and blood orange.

The Verdict: judging by my previous experience with Braeval, the casks played a determining role in the flavour pattern here. The wine finish influence is overwhelming and adds something to the whisky as a whole that most likely turned this from a mediocre to an excellent dram. A beautiful example of whisky engineering. Hats off to you Ian Mcleod.

Score: 85

Nose: 21

Taste: 22
Finish: 20 Balance: 22
   < 75: undrinkable, avoid at all costs
75-79: acceptable, give it a try but don't spend to much money on it
80-84: average, enjoyable whiskies mostly easy sippable entry-level single malt 
85-89: above average drams, often well aged expressions, open your wallet
90-94: excellence, sorry kids no x-mas presents this year, daddy needs this bottle
95-99: divinity, call your bank manager for another mortgage on your house