Can’t believe I’ve never reviewed this one. ‘Specially seeing as how yer boy is an unapologetic Bunna fan.
At an earlier sinDicate Single Malt Society tasting we elected to get a wee bit cheeky and pulled together a ‘barely legal’-themed night; all 18s. One of the 18s we chose for the line-up was an earlier bottle of Bunna 18. As you probably know, it’s a rather decadent dram. Turns out it was also my wife’s favorite of the night. So…many moons later, it just seemed apropos to open a bottle of something a little bigger, a little bolder and a heck of lot more expensive than that 18, on a night when it was just her and I.
Fun to revisit this one. Not much more to say, really. It’s sort of a perennial classic. Old, wizened and as luxuriantly aware of its own girth and swagger as it needs to be. Love it. And as an aside…the distillery turns 140 years old next year. If Distell’s recent investment (a pretty heaping sum) is any indication, there looks to be another 140 ahead. Hope so. Even if Maltmonster doesn’t so much.
Nose: Nutty Oloroso. Sticky dried fruits and equally sticky toffee pudding (like my mate Dave makes!). Syrupy and heavy. Thick, thick, thick smoky honey. Slight menthol. Cherry liquor. Malty. Chocolate. Ovaltine, maybe. A banana and Nutella sandwich. Dunnage. Just the faintest whiff of far off peat. Maybe a memory of gunpowder (yass, yass…the faintest wee bit of sulphur).
Palate: Dried fruits. Loads of sherry. Candied nuts. Chocolate. Figs and sultanas. Cinnamon Toast Crunch. A wee bit of smoke. Damp wood. A little bit weedy too. Butter tarts with slightly overdone pastry. Marmalade. Candied orange peel in dark chocolate. That Islay salinity is here on the palate, moreso than on the nose.
Finish: Long and almost droopy, it’s so heavy. Very much on green berries and jimmy fruits, before the wood takes over and leaves a hint of toasty cask.
Thoughts: A lovely old school style of malt that I admit being a little sentimental for. Not a flawless outing, nor a preferred style necessarily, but this one is more than just the sum of its parts.