Truly a sight to behold is the way Bunnahabhain sits undaunted by its austere surroundings. The distillery faces the sound of Islay just up the coast from Port Askaig, where the sea batters against the rocks with picturesque severity. The harshness of the scene carries a contradictory beauty.
What’s also curious is how a distillery, subjected so severely to the ferocious elements of the Atlantic, can create such a delicate whisky with fantastic balance and subtlety amongst an infamously ‘rowdy’ group of nearby peers.
Bunnahabhain, although subject to alterations during changes of ownership, has maintained a very subtle style of whisky through the years. While her neighbors adopt the use of peat, there is none to be found in older vintages of Bunnahabhain. Instead, gentle salty, nutty and fruity traits are found.
Today the distillery, during certain weeks of the year, does make heavily-peated whisky which gives completely different delight to the palate.
Like a handful of others, Bunnahabhain is a distillery whose whisky shines during both ex-bourbon and ex-sherry cask maturation, developing vastly different characters along the way.