Bruichladdich Brunello Cask Review

Bruichladdich Brunello Cask

49% abv

Score:  88/100

This whisky lit a fire under a friend of mine.  On a whim he nabbed this bottle for a steal of a deal (~$60), and still waxes poetic, though the bottle has sadly…uh…evaporated.  Being a limited run (quite typical for Bruichladdich) in their Single Cask range, stocks of this are now quite low.  Just recently I managed to find one last lonely bottle of this locked behind glass in a local shop.  The canister is dusty and dented, but that won’t stop the friend I mentioned from taking it to a good home.

Well…you certainly can’t fault the lads and lasses at Bruichladdich when it comes to creativity and craft presentation.  The expressions are unique…the abv is always right up there (49% here on this one…bloody well done!)…the packaging is exceptional…and the taste?  More often than not…delicious.

The Brunello Finish in the Single Cask series absolutely fits the Bruichladdich mold.  Thinking outside the box has rewarded Bruichladdich once again.  This is a great malt.  You could probably tack on an extra point or two for value when you add price and abv into the equation.

The nose on this whisky is thick and lovely.  Here you’ll find big smoked caramel or toffee and hints of fresh orange.  It is buttery, as Bruichladdich generally is, and citric as well.  There is a bit of soft and mild cacao peeking around corners and an entirely smooth and pleasant nuttiness, most likely carried by the woods.  The arrival on the tongue is big and arresting, as one would expect at 49%, but the the flavor of the alcohol itself is buried.  That feared alchoholic nip is somehow held in check through the density of taste.  Exceptional for something this strong to be so smoothly drinkable without the burn.

Brunello is an Italian red wine, and some of those characteristics levied by the cask do shine through here.  Most notably in the development.  There are few whiskies out there that have this nifty rollercoaster of sweet notes of creamy caramel to mouth-drying tannins and soft woods.  This phenomenon is not as pronounced as in the oft-noted Highland Park development, but it is present and admirable nevertheless.

This is a whisky for a cool evening and warm conversation.


– Reviewed by:  Curt

– Photo:  Curt

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