Once again, the Lost Distillery Company have recreated a long lost distillery with this splendid blended malt.
Jericho distillery, also known as Benachie, was a distillery of close to 90 years in operation. The distillery was founded in 1822 by a one Will Smith (no, not that one) in the Aberdeenshire hills, an area known for production of barley and for good quality peat on the hill tops, with the Jordan Burn providing water. By 1890 it was so famous that it was the subject of a music-hall one-liner, featured in the Evening Telegraph:-
A: What sort of whisky was that? B: Oh! The Jericho! A: Is that where it comes from? B: No, that’s where those who drink it go to!
William Smith was deeply religious, and thus he named his distillery Jericho, whilst the name of the Jordan Burn would have no doubt appealed to him. Jericho used extremely small stills, producing a rich, heavy and oily spirit.
The Lost Distillery Company are meticulous when it comes to recreating these whiskies, using a ten-step plan approach which tries to match the key parts of the process (such as water, location, maturation, yeast and barley). Jericho used mostly Bere barley, an ancient strain rarely seen these days, and a combination of farm-grown and wild yeast. For a long time the distillery used a small hand-turned wooden mash-tun that meant sugar was poorly extracted. Maturation largely occurred in sherry and madeira casks. The very last cask of Jericho was consumed at a wedding at the distillery’s old barn, at the beginning of the Second World War.
This blended malt faithfully recreates the old whisky, with flavours of fruitcake, sherry spice and toffee-nut, accompanied by citrus, espresso and some vanilla custard notes. The whisky is bottled at 46% ABV, and without either chill filtration or artificial colouration, offering an authentic taste of lost Jericho whisky.
The Lost Distillery Company have plenty of information on the history of Jericho here