The first Campbeltown whisky in this year’s competition. Not too surprising with only a handful of brands coming from there. Couldn’t even say distilleries, because that would be one f-ed up hand!
Crisp and minerally, which sets my mind in one direction straight away. There’s loads of apple, some white grapes and a hint of salt. Some white oak and charcoal on the back of all this.
There’s a bit of oomph building up but it stays rather gentle. Barley cereal, with again, loads of apple. A bit of a greasy feel with vanilla and that hint of salt again.
The finish is medium long, with (no surprise) apple, baked apple, barley and minerals again. Maybe some basalt.
The crisp minerally thing with a hint of salt sends me towards Springbank, the apple would suggest Arran to me. In the end I opted for the Springbank Calvados cask, but in hindsight that was rather dumb. There’s no way this was over 50% ABV.
Experiencing the new 18 this way makes me regret Springbank’s direction. This is where the fairly bland 15 was a few years ago and the old, more sherried Springbank OBs seem a thing of the past. I also feel that the character of the distillery is changing a bit and everything is becoming a bit more mellow.
Let’s hope the special bottlings keep up the stunning quality of before, because OBs like this don’t do it for me.
Springbank 18, 46%, available at Master of Malt at € 94