Wednesday, February 24, 2021


The Benriach Distillery, has today announced the launch of a new peated single malt Scotch whisky expression.

Benriach Smoke Season (52.8% ABV) was matured in a combination of first fill bourbon barrels and charred American Virgin oak casks.

Benriach Smoke Season

This latest release, which forms part of Benriach's recently revamped portfolio, is said to celebrate the time of year when peated spirit runs through its stills, a tradition revived by the distillery over 50 years ago.

Smoky whiskies are not traditionally associated with Speyside, but look back through its distilleries archives and it’s clear that heavily peated single malts were the preferred palate of the region back in the 19th century.

Different to the majority of peat sourced near the sea by distilleries on the West Coast and Islay, Highland peat is sourced from the mainland and derived from ancient trees and heather. This character produces a distinct aromatic smoke which toasts the barley at Benriach.

Commenting on the news, Dr. Rachel Barrie, Master Blender at Benriach Distillery, said: “At Benriach we’re always looking to push the boundaries of what is possible in Speyside single malt. With intensely peated spirit batch distilled every year, we never stop exploring how the fruit and smoke aromatics intertwine and mature in a range of eclectic oak casks, either amplifying or transforming the perception of peat. Smoke Season is the result of exploring 100% intensely peated malt, batch distilled and matured in 1st fill bourbon barrels combined with a high proportion of charred and toasted American Virgin oak casks.”

She went onto say: “Crafted exclusively from intensely peated malt distilled in Smoke Season, the spirit is reminiscent of barbecue smoked fruit in a pine forest.  American virgin oak and bourbon barrel maturation develop sweet caramel smoke and cinnamon spiced roasted apple, with hints of charred orange peel and hickory.”

Benriach Smoke Season, will be available later this month from specialist retailers, for a RRP of £53.00.

Posted by Steve Rush