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Lidl unveils new £34 Islay Ben Bracken single malt - and it's ideal for Christmas drinks

The discount supermarket has added to its award-winning whisky range.

Published: November 23, 2020
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With Christmas just around the corner, Lidl has unveiled its new Ben Bracken 16-Year-Old Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky.

With an ABV of 43%, it is on sale for just £34.99 - less than half the price of its rivals.

Whisky expert Blair Bowman has dubbed the single malt “An incredibly moreish dram, perfect for the colder winter months”.

The exclusive 16-year-old single malt is distilled on Islay, a place known for its famous distilleries and enchanting landscape.

The 16 year old Ben Bracken joins Lidl’s range of award-winning whiskies, and the team at Lidl anticipate that bottles will fly off the shelves before Christmas.

Speaking of the new addition, Blair Bowman, whisky expert, consultant and author said “This single malt whisky truly is a great find. It’s long rich finish and complex tasting notes sets it alongside some of the best premium whiskies out there.

“It is a fantastic whisky and brings unique flavours together, from sea salt to tropical fruit to smoky driftwood, to create the perfect dram for the winter months.”

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Paul McQuade, head of buying spirits at Lidl GB added: “Bringing such an exclusive whisky at this incredible price is testament to our commitment to offer premium Scottish products to our shoppers at market leading prices.

“This 16-year-old single malt from Islay joins our long list of award-winning Ben Bracken whiskies, which offers everything from excellent value Blended Scotch Whiskies to premium Single Malts.

"We are expecting this to fly off the shelves as it makes an excellent gift for any whisky drinker.”

Tasting notes from Blair Bowman

Nose: An initial sharp burst of fresh sea breeze mingles with the warming smoke from a beach bonfire made of briny driftwood.

BBQ’d pineapple, mango and kiwi mix with dark chocolate-coated apples and pears.

Spicy and sweet nutty notes emerge, like honey roasted cashews and almonds with spices like cinnamon, chilli and Szechuan pepper along with the rich tangy sweetness of demerara sugar mixed with pomegranate and sea salt flakes.

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Palate: A very rich and coating mouthfeel. Some warming sweet and salty peat smoke at first is integrated brilliantly with more of the BBQ’d tropical fruit salad notes, smoky pineapple, mango and kiwi.

Opens into freshly polished mahogany wood notes combined with some damp waxed jackets drying after a storm.

The nuttiness has become richer with more of a toasted and smoked nutty note and spicier than on the nose. Freshly made pomanders (orange studded with cloves) and dark chocolate coated orchard fruits come later.

Finish: A lovely and long finish that balances warming sweet and salty smoke, with BBQ’d tropical fruits and nutty spice.

The 16-year-old Islay Ben Bracken is in Lidl stores now and is available while stocks last.

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Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind writes for The Scotsman on all things food and drink related.

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