My introduction to Speyburn a couple of years ago came in the form of its 10-year-old and NAS expressions. Their light and approachable character was matched with their very affordable price tag. Flavor-wise, it’s like a sort of second cousin to Glenmorangie 10yr, without the floral notes. What’s not to love!
The brand’s core range grew with the recent addition of a 15-year-old single malt. Priced at $65, Speyburn 15yr is still easy on the wallet. It matured in a combination of American oak and Spanish oak (read ex-bourbon and ex-sherry) casks.
The nose hints at a creamy whisky, with vanilla, orange peel, and dried fruit. It reminds me of a custard dessert like a crème caramel. On the palate, creamy toffee and vanilla kick things off. Developing soon after are spice notes, dried fruits and semi-sweet chocolate. Bitter orange appears on the back palate. The long finish is warm, with hints of creamy vanilla and orange peel.
Compared to its younger 10-year-old sibling, Speyburn 15-year-old manages to bring a slightly darker and elegant quality to the table – the toffee’s a bit darker, more spice, and the addition of dark chocolate. The dried fruit add even more complexity.
I’m a fan, even with the $30 – $40 markup for an extra five years of maturation. It is still cheaper than a lot of 15-year-old single malts on the market. Speyburn is value-driven without sacrificing quality, and that’s something I always appreciate. Highly recommended! 8.5/10
Thanks to Speyburn for the sample. As always, all thoughts and opinions are my own.
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