Oban 1996

Overall rating
Whiskybase ID
Single Malt
Distillery Bottling
Bottling serie
Diageo Special Releases 2018
Stated Age
21 years old
Refill European Oak Butts
57.9 % Vol.
700 ml 750 ml
Bottle code
Added on
01 Sep 2018 11:28 am by thebase
UncoloredNon-chillfilteredCask Strength

Average value

€ 500.12

25 × in wishlist

60 × member ratings

95 × in collection

Whisky Reviews for Oban 1996

12 users have left a review for this whisky and scored it an average of 87.84 points

  1. markjedi1 scored this whisky 86 points Connoisseur


    Someone whispered into my ear that the Oban 21 ‘does not deliver’. That’s a pity. But allow me to try it for myself. Lo and behold: it is a sniper. It starts somewhat closed, almost sneaky, but given enough time, this one is actually a grand malt!

    True, the nose starts fairly closed, but after some patience lovely coastal notes appear, like we are used to from the classic 14 Year Old. But much more delicate, softer and somewhat feminine. This is very elegant, in fact. Wonderfully fruity on orange marmalade, quince, but also caramel, some menthol, apricot pastry and a whiff of peat. Sweet lemons, linseed oil, marshmallow above a campfire. I find this quite sexy!

    Powerful and feisty on the palate. The sniper has left his lair and empties his magazine! Creamy texture. Salt and sweet go head to head. Coconut, apricot, oranges, menthol and some hazelnuts. Round and full-bodied.

    Unfortunately, the finish is rather short. It turns back to the sweet side and leaves the mouth dry.

    It does deliver! But it will set you back some 450 EUR. You can buy 10 standard bottles for that. Just sayin’.

  2. hs305 scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    [October, 2018] They sell this bottle for 450 GBP at the distillery (and elsewhere) so this must be pretty excellent stuff for a just 21-years old. The check this I bought a dram (25ml for 20 GBP) and tasted it head-to-head to the standard 14-years old Oban (not the most recent but an older bottling) - is the 21 truly worth ten times of the 14's price?

    To be honest: I am neither willing to pay 450 pounds for a 21-years old that I score below 90 points nor do I think that a three points taste difference justifies a tenfold price tag. It will be interesting to watch if they really sell all the bottles for this outrageous price tag (and of course, who buys such stuff)...
    • Nose
      87 87
      The colour of the 14 is a little darker than the 21 but this is irrelevant because they use caramel to fix it. The nose of the 21 is much more complex and balanced with more subtle and delicate aromas (oils, honey, beeswax, some fruits like quinces and apricots). Actually it is pretty good compared to the rather simple and vanilla-toffee driven nose of the 14 but I would not call this excellent. I go for a 3 points advantage in favour of the 21...
    • Taste
      88 88
      The taste of the 21 is nicely layered on different honeys and barley sugars, some fruits and spices and a slight flavour of white chocolate (after some chewing). All is nicely balanced and delicate, I like this much more than the 14's taste that is simple, bold and easy quaffable but not very interesting to explore. I go for a 4 points advantage here… Water is not recommended on the 21 because this dram flattens quickly in all dimensions while the 14 rather improves on some water added (it releases more aromas and flavours and gets smoother, I like it best when reduced to about 35% abv).
    • Finish
      87 87
      The 21 arrives warming and somewhat coating in the mouth with a minor drying feeling (plastics). The finish is rather long and adds more fine chocolatey notes to the profile that I like. Again there is a slight drying-astringent feeling towards the end that reminds me of plastic notes. The finish of the 14 is of medium length only and adds more interesting flavours to the taste like spices, chocolatey notes (too) and more fruits. This is the best about the 14 and so the advantage of the 21 are a mere 2 points in this category.

  3. Arjo S did not rate this whisky Expert Senior

    Ridiculous price tag!!

  4. Highlander65 scored this whisky 82 points Expert Senior

    No alcohol on the nose, scent of wood, light peat, cream.
    In the mouth the alcohol is felt, "dark", peppery, wood flavor. With two drops of water a herbaceous and marine note emerges
    Complex, well done and rich in nuances, but I'm not passionate about it, it has something unfinished.

  5. CherryHeart scored this whisky 86 points Member Senior

    Smell Nose: fresh and juicy and slightly sour plums, blood orange juice, lime peel, vanilla latte, apple pie, feel fine and rich at the same time, it will not be thick and unpleasant, and the balance is excellent. Cup awake integration has become better, but the more monotonous sweet party is destined to be discriminated against.

    Taste Palate: a mouthful of leftovers, mainly dried fruit, melon skin, nut shell, blood orange juice, caramel crushed, oil residue at the bottom of the pot, star anise, date palm, yeast, mint flavor toothpaste, slightly salty .

    After rhyme Finish: shorter, but simple and pleasant, the most beautiful combination of oak barrels and maltose binary structure, of course, there are still some cream, honey water and peat.

    Body: Dry, medium-bodied body, waxy chewing and burning power are like your mother and girlfriend falling into the water at the same time, complexity and balance save some fares.
    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      85 85
    • Finish
      86 86

  6. Lu Cifer scored this whisky 89 points Connoisseur

    Touch of smoke, light grain notes, some oak. Sweet and fruity with aromas of light fruits and fresh orange.

    Slightly oily, sweetish-spicy and fruity with light fruits and orange. Trace spicy, grain, delicate smoke and oak notes, hint of barrel / coffee, now delicately tart oak and chocolate.

    at the beginning delicate tart oak, sweetish-tart-sweetish, some grain. At the end again slightly fruity soft and long fading ...
    • Nose
      89 89
    • Taste
      89 89
    • Finish
      88 88

  7. Teresa scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      86 86

  8. Dris scored this whisky 85 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      86 86
    • Taste
      85 85
    • Finish
      84 84

  9. Georges scored this whisky 90 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      Light, delicate, coastal notes, smoky, salty, orange marmalade, caramel, mint, fruity (apples, grapes)
    • Taste
      Oily, creamy, powerful, nutty, fruity (apricots, pears, oranges), fresh, honey
    • Finish
      Medium long, fruity, sweet, dry

  10. detachedblue scored this whisky 88 points Connoisseur

    A rather fruity dram, not a coastal one! I like it! except the price
    • Nose
      Very fresh and fruity, a touch of smoke, pear drop, fresh apple, some grapes.
    • Taste
      Nutty, fresh and fruity, salty, umami, peach-pear
    • Finish
      Short, thin, very sweet


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