About This Dram
The Strath is a popular spot to drop into for whisky-loving visitors from around BC. After all, finding a selection like ours anywhere outside of Metro Vancouver is quite rare. Whenever we have a visitor from the interior – Vernon for example – the first thing they usually ask is “Do you have any Springbank 15?”. I swear, about two-thirds of our Springbank goes to the Okanagan. Well, we happen to have a few bottles on our shelves right now, so I figured it’s about time the locals discovered just why this whisky is so popular!
Springbank has long been a fan favourite in these parts, especially the more available 10-year-old. In fact, as I type this a week after the whisky has launched in-store – my good friend (and former whisky buyer at Thes Strath) Pat Dunlop is actually in Scotland touring the distillery. He even just posted a photo on Instagram!
What makes Springbank special is not just their rich Campbeltown history but also what they are doing now. A real hands-on, traditional approach to whisky-making. The old saying “it takes a village to raise a child” rings true here, as seemingly half of the small town of Campbeltown is involved in some way. Everything is done in house, from malting the local barley right down to sticking labels on the bottles. They aren’t stuck in their ways though, and their small size makes experimentation easier. Springbank is just one of the three malts distilled at Springbank Distillery, the others being Hazelburn and Longrow. The eponymous house style is lightly peated and distilled 2.5 times.
The one thing that really makes the 15-year-old particularly special, however, is the maturation. 15 long years resting in the Springbank warehouses (where Pat is probably currently sampling some delights), exclusively in ex-sherry casks. It’s as good as it sounds, if not better.
Dry roasted peanuts, sundried apricots, and cigar tobacco were the first aromas to greet us. Then came the tropical carnival of fruit flavours – pineapple, feijoa, and passionfruit.
The palate was darker and richer than expected. The fruit was all dried fruit and cream with baking spices, a wisp of smoke, and old leather. Unique and beautiful.