Monday 21 November 2022

Tasting the BlockBar x BenRiach 40 Year Old NFT Whisky [Tasted #610]

Hot on the heels of Hendy's recent "Brown Forman Whisky Showcase" post comes another Brown Forman single malt, although released in a very different manner...

I ran a poll on Instagram Stories back in January about NFT spirit sales, and unsurprisingly, there was a lot of distrust / disinterest. I'd write out my 2c on the matter here, but I think I covered it pretty well back then:

In summary, whilst there's a heap of BS NFT projects out there with little to no utility (and in my view, value, as the Crypto world is now realising), this isn't one of them...and the fact that so many well-established brands have partnered with BlockBar in such a short space of time (they just had their first birthday) says a lot.

One of those more recent brands is Benriach, who recently released their first NFT recently in the form of the Benriach 40yo Twin Set NFT, available in a limited "drop" of 10 sets only, exclusively via BlockBar.

A 1 of 10 release of a 40yo whisky is a pretty impressive thing to begin with, but not content to stop there, Benriach and BlockBar actually made this a set of two different 40yos. Both 40yo Benriach, but very different whiskies:
  •  "The Forty" - a peated Benriach matured in ex-Bourbon and ex-Port casks, bottled at 43.5%; and
  • "The Forty Octave Cask Matured" - a "classic Speyside" Benriach, matured in Octave casks and bottled at 51.5%
Benriach & BlockBar were kind enough to send me a sample of the former recently, so we could actually taste the liquid behind the NFT...

Benriach "The Forty" 40yo BlockBar NFT release (43.5% ABV, 40yo, One of 10 bottles, Speyside, ~6.78ETH / $8,000USD in a twinset)
Colour: Deep coffee copper

Nose: Old dunnage warehouse, dusty old school (desirable) old sherry casks, but with a vibrant fruitiness too - some blackcurrant, red apple and even some marzipan.

Palate: Follows the nose, with marzipan, then red apple. Theres oak, but it's balanced. I don't get any noticeable peat, but after 40 years (and presumably not an extreme level of PPM to begin with) that's to be expected. There's some humidor notes and coffee beans, a little walnut tannin towards the end, with some oolong tea and rich red berries.

Finish: Long, strong earl grey tea notes with residual oak tannins.

Rating (on my very non-scientific scale): 92/100 (Martin). A lovely dram.

Thanks to BlockBar, BenRiach / Brown Forman & GustoLuxe for the sample of "The Forty" Benriach, available via BlockBar now.


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