I am happy to have with me now couple of samples from Banff distillery. This distillery was closed on 1983 and demolished later on. So we have malt, that is no longer produced and becomes harder and harder to find. So, of course we have independent bottlings as official ones are ultra rare now. I have with me Banff 24 Year Old 1977/2002 - "Missing" (Silver Seal) and more recent one Banff 1975/2013 (Malts of Scotland). I am really curious keeping in mind those a first Banff I will try.
I‘m starting from the older one, obviously cause of lower alcohol content and possibly more delicate palate. Bottlers Malts of Scotland have high place in my books, as I really can‘t remember bad bottling from them. So I have expectations! Let‘s try.... Really interesting malt! With wood and ripe fruits (which is quiet usual for this age), I find kind of steamed potatoes or some sort of sour mushrooms. After writing my own tasting notes, just looked what the great humble Serge Valentine says about it – he finds mustard. I agree something like this. But let‘s call it steamed potatoes for myself. Without this element the rest is more than ok – nice balance, not too much wood, maybe finish is tad too short. Nice malt anyway.
Let‘s grab the second – bottle by Silver Seal at 2002.. Aroma is similar, but with much less fruity notes. Lots of mushrooms, vegetables, bitter tea. Bit too salty and to bitter, out of balance. Finish is longer and character is stronger, but I hoped much more. Quality is like lots of entry level malts around, which are more pleasant to sip.
Anyway, I am pleased to make a check under the name of one more distillery. And most interesting experience is that I have never had something similar in terms of style.