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This dram takes its title from the Buddhist concept of “Samsara” – meaning rebirth – and celebrates the reopening of Bladnoch distillery in 2015, following six years of closure. The whisky has been aged for up to 8 years in a combination of former Bourbon barrels and Californian Red Wine casks, lending depth, body and complexity to the typically grassy and delicate Lowland single malt.
Bladnoch is famed on these shores for being the first Scotch whisky distillery to be owned by an Australian, with David Prior, a former yoghurt magnate, taking control in 2015.
The distillery is found extremely close to the border with England, and like many in Scotland, was originally a farm. The distillery first began to produce spirit in 1817, making it one of the oldest operations in Scotland. Following nearly a century of independent family ownership, Bladnoch was closed, the first of many quiet periods for the distillery.
These days, it’s back to its best, with its historic buildings and an auspicious location proving to be an attractive proposition to drinkers and tourists alike.
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At first, there’s an intense aroma of grassy Lowland malt, before subtle fragrances of dried fruits, floral orange, red wine, toasted oak and vanilla.
Medium bodied and quite supple, with flavours of ripe plums, dark chocolate, toffee’d malt, and dried lemon rind. With time, becomes a little tropical, with passionfruit and mango notes.
A somewhat relaxed finish: long, but not insistent. Light flavours of sweet malt, soft cinnamon, tannic wine and charred oak linger.