Whisky Review – Benriach 10 Year Old (2015)

Benriach 10 Year Old
43% ABV
Non-Chill Filtered
No added colouring
Available for £31.49 from Master of Malt
A brand new addition to the core Benriach range today.  This is their new 10 year old expression. Bottled at 43% and stating non-chill filtration and natural colouring on the packaging, this bodes very interesting indeed. 
Lively, fresh and crisp pears on first pour. There’s a little spirit about the nose, after some time in the glass this lessens and more green fruits are forefront. Green apples, pears, a touch of the tropics. The fruit has a honey coating. Touches of light toffee and runny syrup. Some ginger ale. After some more time there is some forest fruit elements, hints of fruitcake and touches of floral hand wash (in a good way).
Beautifully balanced fruit and sugars and a spicy bite. Apples appear more stewed on the palate with some ripe bananas, all coated in warm honey. The mouthfeel is oily and very pleasant. Pepper and ginger spice things up a little during the development, coming side by side with more waves of fresh fruit and sweet caramel. Toffee apple comes through in the development. 
Toffee apples remain and some Candy floss. It’s quite the fairground finish. Medium-long (longer than I would expect for a 10 year old whisky) length. More spices return and a drying oak tang to finish off the experience. 
Adding water.
Few drops added. The nose now has a little more ginger spice and more floral, weakening the fresh fruit elements slightly. The palate is still beautifully fruity and zingy, a touch more oak is experienced in the development, and more toffee overtaking the fruity waves. The finish is all apples and sugar, and nicely so, the dryness does have a little touch of bittersweet about it, which may appeal. So as to water or not, personally I would not water and enjoy the glorious mouthfeel and flavours neat.  43% seems the perfect level for this dram
What a fantastic addition to Benriach’s core range. I’m so happy to see non chill filtration and natural colouring being prominent in this expression, and the increase to 43% ABV holds such amazing flavour for the relatively young age.  The experience of this dram holds to that of a slightly older whisky, and it is one I want to have available to me. It’s a perfect starting dram to a tasting session, or just a perfect day to day fruity, spicy whisky experience. Lovely stuff. Recommended. 
Thanks to Benriach for the review sample.