Whiskybase

Ben Nevis 1996 ElD

Overall rating
90.25/100
votes
31
Whiskybase ID
WB149557
Category
Single Malt
Distillery
Bottler
Elixir Distillers (ElD)
Bottling serie
The Single Malts of Scotland
Vintage
05.11.1996
Bottled
05.11.2019
Stated Age
23 years old
Casktype
Hogshead
Casknumber
1784
Number of bottles
182
Strength
53.6 % Vol.
Size
700 ml
Barcode
5060532807251
Bottled for
United Kingdom Exclusive
Market
gb United Kingdom
Added on
22 Feb 2020 10:50 am by lullerskatez
UncoloredNon-chillfilteredCask StrengthSingle Cask Whisky

Average value

€ 200.33

29 × in wishlist

31 × member ratings

41 × in collection

Whisky Reviews for Ben Nevis 1996 ElD

14 users have left a review for this whisky and scored it an average of 90.25 points

  1. Johannes de Silentio scored this whisky 90 points Member Senior

    Color: Pale Gold

    Nose: Pungent. One gathers from the color and the cask type that this is fairly close to the distillate, except it's rested for nearly a quarter-century. That being so, this is some distillate. You can smell the weight. There's some mustard, sulfur, overripe fruit, and a light minerality. What a combination! With a few minutes in the glass, Ben Nevis's trademark lemons start to emerge a bit. Further, there's a bit of bitter olive oil with cracked black pepper in it. A little touch of low-salt soy sauce. As it often does for me, water brings out more of the minerality, with more of a focused pink salt feeling now.

    Taste: Arrival is about what'd you expect from a quality-but-near-54% ABV malt: not much heat, but a little nip, and a good mouth-coater. In terms of flavor profiles, the first thing to grab me is bitter citrus (grapefruit) followed by some subtle honey. Unlike the nose, which is fantastic as-is, I think we'll benefit from some water here. It does, although it doesn't bring out a ton more. The nip is gone, but the salient note continues to be grapefruit. Pleasant but austere. I'm also finding a slightly medicinal quality. A good style, but a bit more over fruitiness or waxiness would be a nice balance here. I'm quibbling a bit, but we're at a high-level, so this matters.

    Finish: Neat, it's bitter but not particularly drying, which I don't mind at all.

    Comments: I bought this on the strength of Angus MacRaild's WF review and the fact that I figured it'd serve as an excellent counterpoint to the other '96 Ben Nevis I already own. That one was released for the 2019 TWE Whisky Show. I reviewed it here: https://www.whiskybase.com/whiskies/whisky/139776/ben-nevis-1996-twex

    In the comments to that review, I expressed a desire to compare and contrast the lightly-sherried version I'd tried with a much more naked, refill bourbon version. Well, I found that. I'm scoring them the same, but for very different reasons. The Whisky Show bottling was immediately approachable and had those crowd-pleasing orange notes. While the complexity was there, it's the kind of malt that I'd pour for just about anyone who enjoys his or her whisky. This, on the other hand, is not a beginner whisky or one that can be easily quaffed. Rather, you need to take your time with it and give it proper consideration. Approaching it that way, it's another very impressive iteration of this vintage, which is already approaching legendary status. I will say, the nose is slightly stronger than the palate, in my opinion. I could nose this all day. I appreciate the palate, but I do wish it had a bit more to offer. The nose could have pushed this to 91-92 point, but the palate brings it down to a still very solid 90.

  2. Titi94 did not rate this whisky Connoisseur

    Tasted by WhiskyFun.com (April 4, 2020). Scored 91/100.

  3. Totoro scored this whisky 89 points Connoisseur

    Really good vintage Nevis (especially on the nose), but to my mind, the cask has contributed a bit more peppery sharpness than would have been ideal.
    Scratches the 90-point mark but can't quite get there.
    • Nose
      91 91
      Very nice balance between cask and spirit, though the oak is palpable, with a soft peppery/gingery touch. Very creamy as well, with this buttery, oily, greasy feel that '96 Nevis often displays. A bit of citrus (more from the hoggie than the malt, I think), a good deal of sweetness (going toward corn syrup) and the typical grimy "workshop" aromas I associate with BN: greasy hessian, machine oil, metal polish, and the like. This dirty aspect is counterbalanced by a fragrant floral side, though: elderflower and chamomile, perhaps. The oak also contributes some herbal and woody notes, which I find a bit distracting here since the underlying spirit is so beautiful in its own right.
      I feel like this may benefit from a drop of water...
      And it does open up nicely, becoming creamier and even more fragrant, cracking 90 points without breaking a sweat.
    • Taste
      89 89
      Very intense without water, with a big blast of oak spice (pretty active cask in terms of "pepper production") on the mid-palate. Has all the hallmarks of an older ex-bourbon-cask-matured Nevis (elderflower, oils, a certain steeliness). Water makes it way more balanced, though a certain amount of ginger sharpness cannot be eliminated completely. Also gets a bit tart toward the end.
    • Finish
      88 88
      Astringent, floral (elderflower again), sweet and bitter in equal amounts. Here the cask wins out over the spirit, while I'm left wishing it would've been the other way around.

  4. etwa77 scored this whisky 92 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      93 93
      clean and austere.. full, heavy malt and earthy tones.. very oily, a Clynelish-esque nose.. a powerful mix of delicate smoke and freshly ground coffee beans is the main signature.. around it, there are hints of apples and pears.. more sweet, floral and even medicinal aromas sit waiting at the bottom of the empty glass.
    • Taste
      91 91
      fruity and dry.. the image of a very dry Italian prosecco with a slice of pineapple thrown in.. it lacks a bit of punch, but it more than compensates in finesse and alcohol integration.
    • Finish
      91 91
      long and lemony with a just a touch of ginger.. echoes of tropical fruits and just a bit of slightly bitter salt.

  5. mema82 scored this whisky 91 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      91 91
    • Taste
      91 91
    • Finish
      90 90

  6. OJK scored this whisky 91 points Expert Senior

    Butter, mint, honey and grapefruit on the nose, along with salted lavender, coconut and a hint of aniseed. Wonderful oily and dense palate, with nougat and black pepper, honey and lemons, sweet ash and pineapple. The finish offers some added eucalyptus along with chalk and tropical fruit syrup. A complex fusion of both the mineral and exotic side of Ben Nevis, delivered in satisfyingly dense and oily spirit.

  7. Tastingbros scored this whisky 91 points Expert Senior

    Full review here:
    https://tastingbros.com/2020/12/20/some-more-96s-ben-nevis/
    • Nose
      90 90
    • Taste
      91 91
    • Finish
      91 91

  8. mothers_finest scored this whisky 88 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      89 89
    • Finish
      88 88

  9. yggr scored this whisky 89 points Specialist

    • Nose
      90 90
    • Taste
      89 89
    • Finish
      88 88

  10. DerDennis! scored this whisky 90 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      89 89
    • Taste
      91 91
    • Finish
      90 90

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