BRUICHLADDICH Octomore 10 Virgin oak is uncommon in scotch whisky. While it’s used extensively (indeed it’s required by law) in bourbon and other American whiskies, the climate of Scottish dunnage warehouses does not favor long (10, 15, 20 years) aging in virgin oak. The whiskies become too bitter, too tannic, and too overpoweringly flavored by the oak. Still, when handled carefully and used in moderation, virgin oak can bring unexpected flavors of cinnamon and baking spices, sandalwood, and tropical fruits that aren’t otherwise found when using only refill casks.

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