Ben Nevis 1996, Thompson Brothers

Ben Nevis 1996

For someone who claims to be a Ben Nevis fan, I have very few Ben Nevis reviews here on my website … But don’t worry, I’m catching up because I have written another one. And this time it’s a Ben Nevis 1996 selected by the Thompson Brothers.

The Thompson Brothers are of course best known for the Dornoch Castle hotel with their outstanding whisky bar (if you’ve never been there, go there when it’s possible again). In addition, they have their own distillery (Dornoch distillery) and then they also have their own label. Yup, I don’t know how they do it all and where they get the time from, but it’s clear that whisky is their passion.

Meanwhile, they have already bottled over 50 whiskies, most of which have received very good reviews. And in response, most bottles sell out very quickly. This Ben Nevis is a release of 2019 and is of course long sold out.

This Ben Nevis has matured in a refill sherry butt for 22 years and is bottled at 44.4% ABV.

Ben Nevis 1996 tasting notes:

Nose: Oh, just lovely. This bottle is a few weeks open now and I think the nose has definitely improved. Very very fruity with a fresh undertone. Oranges, honey. A waxy note. Lemons. A hint of pink grapefruit. Minerals. Then it goes towards galia melons and green bananas. Red apples which is quickly followed by milk chocolate.

Taste: Very nice again. Less fruity than the nose suggests, although still some fruit here too. Green bananas and Galia melon. Honey. Then a grapefruit. Chalk and limestone. A herbal note, with mainly menthol. Milk chocolate too.

Finish: Long. Chalk. It’s somewhat bitter because of the grapefruit. Honey and toffee. A menthol note.

Only 44.4% ABV, but this is certainly not a problem here. I’m absolutely enjoying this dram. The bottle has been open for somewhat over a week and it’s so much better than after it was first opened. A whisky with many many flavours. And the more I go back to it, the more I discover. Very good cask pick from the Thompson Brothers!

Redbreast cask strength

Redbreast cask strength, 12 year old, batch B2/19

It almost seems like an Irish week here on Whiskylifestyle! Well, with the exception of the review of…


  1. Nice one Noortje! I love the standard 10 yo Ben Nevis, arguably the best core range 10 yo in my book, IB’s can be a bit all over the place in terms of flavor, but rarely there is a stinker there as well.

    1. Hi Menno, thanks!:-) Yes, the 10-year-old is definitely one of the best 10-year-olds out there. Totally agree! True about the IB’s but then again, 1996 was a fantastic year for Ben Nevis (well actually for a lot of other brands also) and so far I haven’t had a bad Ben Nevis from that year.

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