The nose starts with dried dates and figs, polished wood, leather and hand-made Iranian carpets (a Middle Eastern market?) – Eventually finding other fruits (apricots, stewed plums, baked apple) and sweet coconut (like Peshawari naan) – definitely Eastern, exotic and alluring. The palate combines deep sweetness (malt extract, syrup of figs, muscovado) with lots of wood, spice cupboard warmth (turmeric, garam masala), tree-bark and eucalyptus. The reduced nose finds black rococo tulips, liquorice, leather and Fernet Branca (props for a Hammer film perhaps). The palate has manuka honey, black tea, All-bran and Demeraracrunch – now sweeter and lip-smackingly more-ish – a serendipitous discovery.
Drinking tip: After dinner with espresso.
Colour: Amber Cask: Second-fill Oloroso butt Age: 14 years Date distilled: April 2002 Alcohol: 59.5% USA allocation: 114 bottles