Showing posts with label Italian Single Malt Whisky Review. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Italian Single Malt Whisky Review. Show all posts

Puni Vina Marsala Review

“Troppo Giovane”

Whisky Review # 829

Country: Italy
Region: South Tyrol
Brand: Puni Vina - Marsala Edition
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: 5 Years
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 43%
Maturation: European Oak Sicilian Marsala Vergine Casks
Chill Filtration: No
Price Range: US$ 50-60 (September 2019)
Price/Quality ratio: Borderline 
Buying Advice: 😔Young Italian Malt with a Good Nose and a Bitter Palate.


Dark Amber with a dash of Orange (Natural Colour)


Sweet and quite Fruity. Its Youth is obvious and there's a bit of Alcohol around. The Wine Cask is quite prominent and offers lots of Fresh and Dried Fruit. This is my first Italian Whisky and the Nose is a pleasant surprise. It's somewhere between Scotch, Bourbon, Cognac and Fruit Liqueur.

Main Aromas:

Toasted Cereals, Buttered Toast, Dried Fruit like Raisins, Apricots, Sultanas, Plums, Figs and Dates, Red Wine, Cinnamon, Oak, Citrus and Milk Chocolate.

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Caramel, Red Apple, Sugared Almonds, Honey, Tobacco, Leather, Dark Cherry and Strawberry Ice Cream.


Young, Harsh and quite Dry. Too much Alcohol burn at this point. There's not much left of the Fruit that carried the Nose. We're left with some Dried Fruit & Bitter Oak.

Main Flavours:

Toasted Cereals, Dried Fruit like Raisins, Sultanas and Plums, Bitter Orange,  Red Apple, Dark Cherries and Berries, Port Wine, Bitter Almonds, Dusty Oak, Pepper and Rye.

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Nuts and Nutshells (Walnuts), Brown Sugar, Leather, Tobacco, Dried Herbs, Cinnamon, Cocoa Powder, Varnish and Stale Espresso.


Creamy but Short. It's quite clear now we're talking about a Young Whisky. The Alcohol is more present now. It starts Sweet but an increasing rather unpleasant Bitterness appears that does not seduce you to have another sip. In fact all that remains after a while is an Iron-like aftertaste. I also find Toasted Cereals, Rye, Nuts and Nutshells (Walnuts), Dried Fruit like Raisins, Apricots, Sultanas and Plums, Bitter Orange and Grapefruit Juice, Red Apple, Cinnamon, Pepper, Oak, Varnish and Stale Espresso.

Drinking Advice:

Because of the small size of the sample I only tasted this Puni neat.

Rating: 79
Nose: 21.5 - Taste: 19 - Finish: 18.5 - Overall: 20

Drinking Experience Neat: Okay. Good Nose though.


Albert Ebensperger laid the foundation for Puni, the first Italian Whisky distillery, in 2010. Production started in February 2012 and the first Whisky was released in 2015. Puni takes its name from the River which flows through the Vinschgau valley, a region with a long tradition of Grain production. Rye has always been the most important crop and this Grain is used for making the Puni Whiskies alongside Barley & Wheat. The two Pot Stills were produced in Roth in Scotland and the building follows the traditional regional barn style, expressed in a modern way. In the autumn of 2012 a Visitor Centre was opened.

The Vina (Wine) series comprise of Single Malt that matured in Ex-Wine casks. The Marsala is a fortified wine produced on the island of Sicily. The Puni Malts are marketed in very nice modern Stills-like bottles.

In general I'm not a huge fan of European mainland Whiskies although there are always exceptions of course. My main problem with them is that they're mostly bottled at a very young age of between 3 and 5 Years. Of course I understand the economic necessity to make money but it's too short a time to produce a balanced well-matured Whisky. A higher ABV and alternative casks mask some of the problems but don't solve the main issue being Youth.

I must admit I was pleasantly surprised by the Fruitiness of the Nose. It shows that the Spirit is potentially good. Ideally it would mature for ten years or so in Ex-Bourbon casks before being finished in (Sweet) Wine casks. The Palate and Finish show however that 5 Years in ex-Marsala casks is too short on the one hand and too one-sided on the other hand. They say that time heals all wounds. It also produces good Whisky! I really hope to be able to enjoy a fully matured Puni in the future. The project deserves it!


Jan van den Ende                                                               September 2, 2019