Springbank has long been one of my favorite distilleries, making interesting yet engaging stuff. Hazelburn is sort of Springbank’s little brother,
Nose: A very rich nose with clear Oloroso influence. Raisins and dried plums, some tobacco leaves and leather. Notes of furniture polish too. I’m getting a hint of sulphur but not overly so. Digging a bit deeper there’s cough syrup and ham. Hazelburn is supposed to be unpeated but I do get a whiff of smoke in there too.
Palate: Quite a fat and oily arrival. Dark chocolate, raisins, plums and brown sugar. I was pleasantly surprised to find that Springbank funk in here as well.
Finish: The brown sugar extends into the finish. It has quite an intense sweetness and lingers for a long time. I can’t seem to get rid of that smokey note, not that I mind.
A beautifully complex whisky, although not the most accessible to beginners.