Truth be told, we started this review a while ago. We had this alongside the previously reviewed Bruichladdich 1990/25 travel exclusive. Both drams are excellent and I’d happily guzzle either of them. The slight edge goes to the namesake bottling; it skews more on the darkly rich decadent side.
The Signatory bottling holds its own easily against any other bottle of whisky. It has a much more floral and stonefruit character than the dark plums of the Bruichladdich 1990/25. Both were in refill sherry butts, so it’s quite surprising the vast difference in taste.
Nose: Mouthwatering. Ripe stonefruits. Some acetone and nail polish. Golden raisins, jolly ranchers, somewhat floral, and caramel. Barley. Palate: Sweet caramel, vanilla, light wood, honey, toffee, and sugar. Ends with dark fruits and raisins, pie crust, dark toasted oak, and salty malt at the end. Summary Overall: 8/10. Since finally writing down our reviews on this, the liquid levels are rapidly disappearing. It’s a really good dram. Bought for: I think a little north of $200 but I don’t remember to be honest…
Quick overview of our scoring system. Note that we try to give a “5” for an average whisky, which is lower than standard whisky scoring guides (typically around 80).
- Age: 26 years
- Distilled in 1990 (Sept 26th)
- Bottled in 2017 (July 19th)
- ABV: 50%
- Bottle: 465 out of 508
- Cask: Refill Sherry, No. 172
About Signatory and Bruichladdich
- Signatory is an independent bottler located on the same site as Edradour distillery – one of the top distilleries we visited and with a tasting room out of a whisky geek’s dreams (click the link for the full review)
- Bruichladdich was our favorite distillery tour on Islay (read more about our visit here). It is also the largest private employer on Islay (even more than Laphroaig or Lagavulin) due to its reliance on manpower versus machines.
- It is famous for its Octomore line, which is known for having extremely high peat levels – even up to 200 to 300 ppm (its 08.3 has 309 ppm). Its peated Port Charlotte line is 40 ppm.
- Prides itself on being highly experimental and for trying to feature terroir (even releasing a “terroir-ed” gin called Botanist)
- Built in 1881 but mothballed in 2000 – before it was purchased by its fan and aficionado Mark Reynier. Now owned by Remy Cointreau.
- Read our Bruichladdich classic laddie here.