The nose evoked the smouldering remains of a bonfire of sherry-butt staves – ash, wood and wine – it also put us in the mood for a coffee break – flavoured coffee, After Eights, gingerbread and maple pecan Danish. The palate etched our tongues with substantial sweet peat smoke, aniseed, butterscotch and sugary espresso dregs – elegant yet powerful – a tiny troop of ballet dancers pirouetting on our taste-buds, leaving spiral traces of smoky cicatrisation. The reduced nose suggested scorched coconut, caraway crackers, liquorice and metal snuff boxes. The palate had become a sweet, smoky, herbal, honey spice box – first-rate fun and exceptional balance.
Drinking tip: A dram to enhance a coffee break by a log fire.
Colour: Antique oak Cask: Refill butt Age: 18 years Date distilled: September 1997 Alcohol: 57.6% USA allocation: 150 bottles