Ben Nevis 1996 Sb

Overall rating
Whiskybase ID
Single Malt
Sansibar (Sb)
Bottling serie
The Clans Label
Stated Age
24 years old
Ex-Bourbon Cask
Number of bottles
43.9 % Vol.
700 ml
Bottled for
Added on
29 dec 2020 10:49 am by Flo1337
UncoloredNon-chillfilteredCask StrengthSingle Cask Whisky

Average value

€ 199.93

13 × in wishlist

45 × member ratings

58 × in collection

Whisky reviews for Ben Nevis 1996 Sb

10 users have left 10 reviews for this whisky. Average rating is 86.33 points.

  1. zaphod155 scored this whisky 88 points Expert Senior

    On the nose, the whisky starts out very promising and versatile. Unfortunately, the taste can't keep up here and the finish doesn't take place at all for me. Either I had a bad day or I'm not getting really warm with this Ben Nevis.
    • Nose
      It starts with distinct citrus notes, lemon and lime. In addition, a sugar-like sweetness. Then there are other fruits, apricot, peach, pineapple and apple. Vanilla comes to the front. Everything accompanied by a chilli heat. Last but not least, there are also spices.
    • Taste
      Here comes the vanilla first, then a slightly sugary sweetness and ripe light fruits. Spicy notes show up. Also a little light chocolate. The sharpness is not quite as clear as in the nose.
    • Finish
      I find the aftertaste extremely short. It disappears very quickly and is not remembered.

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  3. wako93 scored this whisky 88 points Expert Senior

    Fine fruit notes, with distinctive wood. Solid Nevis, if not something to look for long.

  4. Gregers scored this whisky 82 points Expert Senior

    Odd, odd nose. Taste actually not bad, and the finish is great.

    • Nose
      72 72
      Definitely peculiar. Fresh peach with something strange below, maybe cheese? It's not sulphuric, just odd. Sourdough, I think. Wollen sweaters and wet socks.Gummy bears, jelly beans. Yeasty, chemical, candy fragrant nose.
    • Taste
      87 87
      Alcohol is quite light, and no odd notes. Light fruity notes, but not really sweet. Jelly beans, then freshly cut grass, oaky bitterness. Not bad, but light. Second chew brings biscuits, waffles with maple syrup, light ginger, it's more filling also. Quite good here. Third chew is a little fuller again, and a bit dry around the gums, definitely more fruity notes now, white peach, ripe banana, pear, very light toffee, some sweet liquorice. Ginger also fuller.
    • Finish
      88 88
      Pickled sweet ginger, sweet liquorice, peach and bananas, actually very good with great balance.

  5. hs305 scored this whisky 79 points Connoisseur

    [May, 2021] I could not believe a mid-nineties Ben Nevis can be of such a low quality so I did several different tastings of this dram at different times, different places and in different moods. But the results are all the same...

    ...and this is a disappointing release from an otherwise very fine period of that distillery. All Ben Nevis drams from the mid-nineties I tasted so far were of a clearly above-average quality, some of them even outstanding. But this one is poor, drawn from a cask that was completely leached and did not support the maturation of the spirit at all. This tastes like a much younger whisky, in a blind setting I might have guessed 8-10 years, certainly not older. The fine Ben Nevis profile is almost not recognisable, this spirit could be from any no-name distillery anywhere in the world.

    This release highlights the importance of good-quality casks to the maturation process - even a great distillate like Ben Nevis can not enfold its rich profile if the cask is exhausted. But why the hell did the bottler not do a finish in a fresh cask, this is what finishes were invented for (in the first place)?
    • Nose
      79 79
      The colour is very pale for a 24-years long maturation at pale straw and the nose offers an immature and very young profile of mostly mashy-spirity aromas, just like a pre-mature dram. Even out of a big spherical blender's glass it is hard to catch any other aromas and I am jealous on all the other members who describe a very fine nose. My olfactory cells are simply too dull to identify anything of interest in there, sorry folks.
    • Taste
      80 80
      The taste is barley sugary sweet with distant hints of unripe fruits, again this reminds me of very young spirits (less than ten years of maturation). It is not bad, but it is not good either. And my taste buds are as dull as my olfactory cells and cannot detect anything of interest in this taste. Of course, this is drinkable but I would not spend more than 30 Euro on a bottle of such a low quality, to be honest. As there is no flaw with this dram I will vat the remainder of the bottle with a rich-flavoured standard whisky (e.g., from Islay).
    • Finish
      77 77
      The dram arrives a little hot and a little coating on the palate with significant bitter-astringent moments from the wood. The finish is short and stays sugary sweet without adding any new impressions. There is an unpleasant drying-astringent feeling towards the end (papers). Water does not help either, both nose and taste just get flat without releasing new impressions. What a huge disappointment!

  6. Luigisim scored this whisky 89 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      90 90
      Long lasting nose of smoked paprika
    • Taste
      89 89
      Wood, spicy and salty
    • Finish
      89 89
      Peated and warm

  7. WhiskyNotes scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    Nose: instead of the waxy and tropical 1996’s that we’ve come to love, this one starts mashy, even a tad rubbery. Hints of yoghurt and gravel. Lemons, green apples and grapefruits make it brighter after a while. Back to dough and herbal notes. There are flashes of pineapple and peach as well, but they never really come to the fore.

    Mouth: fruitier now, showing unripe nectarines, grapefruits and green banana, but still not the fruit bomb we were hoping for. The fruits are overtaken by grassy notes and oak spice (mainly ginger and white pepper), walnuts and citrus peel. Plenty of herbs again.

    Finish: medium, with pepper, citrus peels as well as some floral notes.

    We may only remember the highflyers, but in reality we’ve had very different scores for seemingly similar casks of Ben Nevis 1996. They weren’t all convincing. This one is not a bad dram but it suffers from comparison.

  8. mr_barleycorn scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    Nose: The first nose shows that there is a Ben Nevis in the glass. Nevertheless, this one is different from the one I've had in the glass before. Quite closed at the beginning, light fruity aromas of ripe lemons, green apples, unripe peaches and star fruit emerge over time. In addition, white chocolate and vanilla, some cake batter, but also tart notes. These go in the direction of bergamot, but also baking cocoa. Over time, the malt becomes a bit fleshy on the nose, along with cake herbs.

    Taste: Sweet lemon cream, peach, white pepper, again white chocolate. At the same time tart with grapefruit peel and Earl Gray. With the second sip, the fruit comes back. Peaches, light grapes, mirabelle plums, pears. In addition wormwood and thyme.

    Finish: medium. The grapes now bring the tannins with them. A little pepper remains and a sweet and sour citrus note remains.

  9. ARDBERG scored this whisky 80 points Connoisseur

    I can not follow the reviews and scores. Yes, Ben Nevis as a name has weight, but to me this is an immature whisky probably out of a 4+th fill cask that was not able to provide any depth to the whisky. For what it is, a 24 yo @ around 200 Eu, I'd have to put the score at 65 or even lower. Though, this is drinkable, has a nice fruity floral malty component that hides some of the immaturity with its sweetness, but apart from that an utter disappointment. You want proof of that? Look here:

    So as a courtesy 80 points because it is drinkable...

    (5 cl samples each)

  10. didi1893 scored this whisky 89 points Connoisseur

    Extremely long and oily streaks are still sticking to the glass wall, what a fantastic sight! 24 years of aging in a Bourbon Cask have left their mark: vanilla, apricots, mirabelle plums, herbs, lots of wood and nothing compared to a Ben Nevis from a Sherry Cask. With this type of barrel, the tart and spicy wood tones dominate, but the fruity notes unfortunately fall by the wayside. Nevertheless, a very interesting and tasty bottling with a lot to discover.

    22/22/22/23 (89P)
    • Nose
      In the Premium Snifter, light caramel shimmers, thick and oily "legs" adorn the glass wall, while creamy apricots and velvety peaches gently rise from the glass. More yellow fruits come into their own, slightly floral and grassy, mirabelle plums and quinces are followed by hints of sweet apples and ripe pears. Spicy wood tones and meadow herbs appear discreetly with a touch of dried vanilla pod, the alcohol is wonderfully soft and mild. A touch of cane sugar and old mint, hints of milk chocolate and toffee, the nose is incredibly mild and yet very complex and multi-layered.
    • Taste
      A mixture of spicy wood and dark yellow fruit makes its way through the mouth after the first sip, a minimal pinch of white pepper envelops the tongue and lines the palate with a mild spiciness. The spicy wood tones become more intense, apricots and apples appear dark, hazelnuts swim tartly in the stimulated saliva under the tongue. Grassy and floral elements appear again, fresh meadow herbs and vanilla pods emerge and end in tart and spicy wooden elements. After another sip, the peppery spiciness on the tongue intensifies, the saliva is massively stimulated again, grassy walnuts mingle with tart and sometimes bitter wood tones.
    • Finish
      Unripe walnuts stick to the palate with tart wood tones, white pepper massages the tip of the tongue while grassy and floral elements reappear. Dark, yellow fruit notes rest flat and muted on the palate, the pleasant sharpness slowly fades on the tongue and stimulates the flow of saliva again. Nuts, a touch of wet leaves, spicy and creamy wood tones, fresh herbs and sweet caramel, the aftertaste burns off a firework of aromas before it gradually fades and leaves an oily or greasy film on the tongue.

  11. Whisky-Connaisseur did not rate this whisky Expert Senior

    Nearly two and a half decades of maturation in an ex-bourbon cask gave this Ben Nevis single malt wonderful fruity aromas of ripe, yellow fruits, plenty of vanilla, plus floral notes, some herbs and a pleasantly warming and not too oaky spiciness. A malt for which you should take plenty of time to explore its complex variety of flavours in its entirety.

    I thank for the complimentary sample!
    • Nose
      Fruity start on the nose with notes of peach and apricot. Then fruit compote on toast, followed by herbal notes and spicy oak. In the background vanilla cream with fruity wine gum.
    • Taste
      At first, the wonderfully sweet fruit aromas of peach, apricot with a bit of banana dominate. Then a slightly warming spiciness with oak and white pepper expands before vanilla cream and floral notes take over.
    • Finish
      The finish is long and slightly warming with creamy vanilla. Becomes increasingly dry towards the end with oak and some allspice.

      With water: After the addition of a few drops of water fresher and fruiter on the nose with apricot and passion fruit, along with floral notes and a little more oak. Fruity also on the palate with peach, wine gum and juicy pineapple. Plus vanilla cream and slightly warming spicy notes of oak as well as a touch of pepper. The finish is a bit shorter and slightly warming with dried herbs, floral notes and dry oak.


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