The BenRiach Single Peated Malt "The Curiositas" Aged 10 years.

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This week we decided to sample the ten year old "heavily peated" expression from The BenRiach, a speyside distillery that we have not sampled before.

This bottle certainly delivers on its promise of "explosive peat reek", truly pushing the boundaries of palatability with hot, wafting odor of peat on the nose and throughout. The wave of peat is followed by aftershocks of iodine, salt, leather and preserved fruits. There is a "shoebox" mustiness and oily texture which is not pleasing at all.

Adding ice brings out greater balance, sweetness, and a peppermint finish which is much more enjoyable. All in all, it has the character of a sweet, Speyside malt--smashed with peat. It's far to closed to drink straight, so keep ice or spring water handy to soften the blow. I have much higher hopes for the Pedro Ximenes and Tawny Port barreled expressions from BenRiach, which are both bottled at 15 years and presumably spared the clumsy blast of excessive peat present here.

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