114.2 Proof, 750 ml
#5 on Whiskey Advocate's Top 20 Whiskies of 2019
"The yin to Aberlour A’bunadh’s yang, this cask-strength single malt is matured entirely in bourbon casks rather than sherry. The result is a bracingly pure whisky with deceptive simplicity; its flavors are clean and its structure precise, but it’s far from boring. The nose recalls black-and-white cookies, vanilla-frosted yellow cake, and shortbread with caramel topping, along with honeysuckle, jasmine, and coconut cream. Mouth-coating and full, it has flavors of poached pear, malt balls, nougat, lemon curd, toasted coconut, and hints of spice. Vanilla, chocolate, and nut flavors are almost endless on the finish. Add water, or don’t: this is delicious either way. —Susannah Skiver Barton"
"Aberlour A'Bunadh Alba is a no-age statement cask strength single malt release for the Speyside distillery. However, unlike Aberlour A'Bunadh which matures exclusively in ex-sherry casks, Aberlour A'Bunadh Alba matures in American oak ex-bourbon barrels. A'bunadh means "of the origin" and Alba refers to the American oak (Quercus Alba) which is used here. This is a US exclusive release with availability beginning September 2019." The Distiller
"Aberlour has unveiled a new release exclusive to the US, a bourbon barrel-aged single malt called Aberlour A’bunadh Alba.
The distillery has been better known for its sherry-aged whisky, including Aberlour A’bunadh, a yearly sherry cask-aged single malt that the distillery first rolled out in the 90s. The new bourbon barrel-aged expression is the first extension of the A’bunadh lineup.
Like its sherry-aged predecessor, A’bunadh Alba is a cask-strength, non-chill-filtered, non-age statement expression. It is aged entirely in first-fill American oak ex-bourbon casks, which is said to impart “a complex mix of sweet baked apples notes alongside crisp citrus flavors.”
The name A’bunadh Alba was well thought out; A’bunadh means “of the origin” in Scottish Gaelic, while Alba means “Scotland.” Alba, however, is also a reference to Quercus alba, the scientific name of American white oak, whose wood bourbon barrels are made of.
“Alba is the perfect counter-point to the classic A’bunadh, while still offering those familiar sweet, fruity notes which are rooted in the new spirit’s DNA,” said Graeme Cruickshank, master distiller at Aberlour, in a prepared statement. “There are, however, stark differences in color and body, which should intrigue A’bunadh devotees and welcome new drinkers to the concept we lovingly know as ‘the original.'”
The distillery’s official tasting notes are as follows:
Look: Light Gold
Aroma: Sweet with apples and pears; notes of honey and vanilla
Taste: Citrusy with notes of baked apple and hints of almonds
Finish: Smooth and sweet" The Whiskey Wash
ALL BOTTLES ARE 750 ML UNLESS OTHERWISE NOTED
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