McDonald's Celebrated Traditional Ben Nevis Single Malt Scotch Whisky (700ml)
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McDonald's Celebrated Traditional Ben Nevis Single Malt Scotch Whisky (700ml)

Highlands, SCOTLAND
$119. 99
$1439.88 Dozen
ABV: 46%

A 'replica' Highland whisky and one of the smokiest Ben Nevis to date.

A distillery that’s garnered a quiet cult following, especially as its whiskies have become harder to find...

Initially launched as a limited edition, the first McDonald's outturn amounted to roughly 700 bottles and featured an historical label. It quickly sold out with demand far exceeding supply. Realising it warranted a wider release, Ben Nevis followed through. And according to the blogosphere, many tasters prefer this bottling to the official Bennie 10.

Majority matured in Sherry casks (the remainder x Bourbon), reports have this to be at least 5 years old, but with material up to 13 years of age. Self described as an attempt to replicate the spirit produced at Ben Nevis in 1882, malt is sourced from Port Ellen Maltings on Islay (peated to around 35ppm) - which means this is smokey, but in an ashy/sooty way rather than a maritime way, and it's also non chill filtered. To reflect its heritage, the label refers to a time when Ben Nevis was producing peated malt under the directorship of Donald Peter McDonald (son of the famous Long John McDonald) for use in the then world famous 'Dew of Ben Nevis'. Typically it was bottled as a relatively young whisky. Putting it all together you get a faithful replica of an ‘old-Highlands’ style, starting with a beaming polished copper colour showing considerable legs, and thick malty aromas, developing hints of dried apricot, hazelnut chocolate, chimney soot and trace lanolin. And it's repeated in a chewy, oily delivery; Spices fan out in a sultry burst of malt and sooty peat, with smoke and fresh oak rounding out the mid palate richness. Nicely balanced uncut, a small amount of water accents the latent fruitiness and sweetens the profile. Either way it's tasty stuff. 46% Alc./Vol. Non chill filtered.

Other reviews... Liquid Gold Award - 2014 Jim Murray's Whisky Bible.

[+/-2020] ...We've tried an earlier expression back in 2013 and were not totally flabbergasted, but it was good (WF 83). Colour: white wine. Nose: more peat than I remembered. Dirt and scoria, gravel, soot, old stove, apple peelings and last year's walnuts. Definitely kind of metallic as well. Then ripe plums, tartes and cakes. A little brine too, capers… Mouth: hold on, this is good. More dirt and soot, ashes, kippers, green apples, some grist and flour, perhaps a tiny olive, seashells… It's peatier than I remembered. Finish: good length, with a little vanilla coating it. A grassy peatiness and some pepper and coconut  in the aftertaste. Comments: probably a little young (that coconut) but the spirit is pretty vigorous, hale and hearty. And peaty. 84 points -