Benrinnes 12, 2007-2020, Cask 14358, 54.9% – WIN for Whisky Weekend Twente

Whisky Weekend Twente is one of the many whisky festivals in The Netherlands. It is also one that I’ve never been to, since it’s quite far away (to Dutch standards) and it’s one of those festivals where it’s mostly importers and bottlers, much like about 90% of the other whisky festivals in the country.

Nothing wrong with that, of course, but it’s not something I have to travel for a lot. As in, I could also go to Alkmaar, Den Haag, Groningen, and quite some others that I could come up with if I gave it some thought.

A couple of years ago they bottled this Benrinnes, and by the looks of it the cask was selected by Whisky Import Nederland. Known for importing quite a few brands, and bottling First Cask and such series.

Image from Whiskybase

Very grain forward with not much to back it up. There’s barley and a bit of oak, but it smells very young and like it matured in a rather lazy cask. I tried giving it some time, but nothing else is happening. Maybe there’s a timid note of dried apple, on top of the bit of oak and lots of barley, but that’s it.

The palate is rather sharp with a biting alcohol. Dryness from the grains, lots of chaff and such. Some oak shavings and white pepper.

The finish keeps its bite and doesn’t diminish quickly. As in, the bite remains, but since there wasn’t a lot of flavor to begin with, there’s not much else happening on the finish either.

This is one of those single malts that don’t really fill a gap on the market. Especially at € 55 there are many, many better whiskies available.

A while ago I got into a discussion on Facebook (silly, I know) about what the cut-off point of whisky’s ratings is in regard to quality. I said something blunt like ‘whisky scoring below 80 point is shit’ and that there’s no reason for it to exist since there’s so much affordable and better whisky available at that point. This is one of those whiskies that don’t need to exist. It’s just not good enough..


Still available (which is also rather telling) at € 55


About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm very interested in booze, with a focus on whisky. I like to listen to loads of music and play lots of Magic: the Gathering, and board games too. I'm married to Anneke, have two daughters Ot and Cato, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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