It’s funny how some bottles enjoy the limelight/buzz/hype – sometimes/often regardless of the quality or provenance of the whisky inside – whilst others do not. Even after Ralfy awarded this blended malt a mark of 92, surprisingly perhaps, this one has proved no gain for the flippers. All the better for the sippers then.
N: Though highly regarded greatly-aged juice for the price [in these times], £260 is still a very large sum of money for one bottle of whisky [by most people’s standards, including my own]. So much so, I initially offered this up as a bottle split. My plan was to take 10cl and share the other 60cl between three fellow Swaggers. On opening the bottle, however, I instantly had second thoughts as I intimated to my fellow potential ‘shareholders’ as the weeks into months rolled on. Most recognisable as old Bunnahabhain [not the Glenrothes? counterpart], we’ve those dunnage-y confectionary dried citrusy highly concentrated fruit [apricot, dates, fig, prune juice, Nocino,…] sugars that only being to emerge in fairly mature expressions. Despite some edgy spicy pepperiness, everything is in place and very laid back, bottled in [perfect] time before any rust spots have started to develop.
T: This is delicious whisky I wish to have around in abundance. It’s certainly sharp citrus > peppery/spicy, requiring a few sips to layer up the palate in order to best glean the fruits of maturity. As on the nose, those delectable aged sugars hark first before taking a plentiful citrus~sweet~ sour dry chalky > cream & bitter oak direction, fairly pronto. Add water for a somewhat thin-dunnage-y yet delectable boozy [strawberry-ish] fruit jam with some light dusty waxiness. Get the water ratio right for an increased malty dunnage quality.
F: With murky sour~bitter slightly waxy fungal/hessian bung cover/woody undertones, the acidic citrus quality remains an integrated part, the age-resilient bourbon [>sherry?]-matured spirit always the beating heart.
C: Away from contemporary whisky’s [84-87 point] quality cul-de-sac, it’s good to be reminded of the other side of whisky every now and again. Though far from perfection, every sip is utterly moreish, all those years of maturation giving far more than they compromise. Please, whisky gods, send me a bottle like this every few months. Thank you.
[Easily] scores 90 points