With the second smell, the pear and honey sweetness is always presented. The bitter notes combine well with the alcohol, so the whisky looks a bit older than it is. Complementary or contradictory? For me, this whisky works, which may be a bit too rough for some palates. There is hardly any change in the overall impression when water is added. 23/21/21/21 = 86
Striking in the glass is the abundant blistering, which lasts for a long time and surprises with the rather "low" alcohol strength. After wetting the glass wall, average legs are formed in both broad and running behavior. (It would be interesting to see what conclusions these contradictory impressions in a blind tasting would provoke.) Immediately a sweet fruitiness is present, which reminds of its effectiveness on freshly cut exotic fruit (pineapple?). Dominant are citrusy notes, which are accompanied by vanilla. The result of this interaction is the impression of ripe pear. Added to this is a pronounced malt note, light grapes and a little shortbread. Overall, a very auspicious nose that represents the top mark of what one can expect from an ex-Burbon-backed Speysider in this age group. (He seems "on the first smell" older than 15 years - the subjective impression tends to a good 18 or even 20 years.)
On the tongue is a beautiful honey sweetness, but not directly present, but takes a few seconds to develop isch. This is accompanied by strong firmness, the ripe pear, a potpourri of light fruits, marzipan and a woody bitterness ... Grappa! Since the sweetness counteracts the Grappa character, the Malt knows how to please - even if he does not meet everyone's taste.
The finish is medium and warm and is carried by the sweetness, zest and slight bitterness.