A resonant mix of rich, stewed red and black fruits (hawthorn and bramble jam), overlaid with some varnish, mandarin, nutmeg, red cherry and polish. There’s light heat and slightly nutty, oxidised elements (sultana and sweet date), before dried apricot begins to emerge, adding a Cognac-esque quality. Water is needed to reveal the distillery character fully, with the rosin-like elements seen on the neat nose moving into the background and a mix of almost smoky tropical fruits beginning to emerge. In time it gets waxy and more spiced, with some orange pekoe tea elements. Fascinating.
Thick and layered, with an instant, full-blooded mix of balanced bitterness, roasting spices, light coffee and a fleeting touch of sage before the fruits begin to pull through, moving into sultana and orchard fruits. It pushes out in all directions: bitter, sweet, tannic, fruity and fragrant, yet somehow a balance is struck. When water is added, the red fruits re-emerge with added raspberries, a touch of marzipan (cherry stone), then clove and those tropical fruits, but always with a slight spike of heat.
Huge. Allspice, clove, Seville orange and a little menthol; even a charred element.
Glen Elgin turned up to 11. A first-fill Sherry cask, but it’s not a Sherried whisky as you might understand the term. Not a bad way to kick off the new-look Connoisseur’s Choice range. Available globally (bar the US).
RIGHT PLACE, RIGHT TIME
As necessary as Vitamin C.