Cley, the craft distillery run by Paul and Maria in Rotterdam, is slowly but surely putting together a nice range. I tried their Malt & Rye before, but today I’ll taste their single malt. It is triple distilled and matured for three years in ex bourbon casks before getting a finish on a Toasted Virgin American Oak quarter cask. It is bottled at cask strength.
Accessible nose on vanilla, quatre quart cake, double baked bread (with that lovely dark, crispy crust), overripe banana, honey, toffee and cinnamon. Hint of lime and pancakes.
Oily and despite the high ABV very approachable. Now the citrus fruit comes first, followed by caramel, sultanas and pancakes with apple. Cinnamon, candied ginger and cloves make it very feisty. The oak certainly puts it foot down, but it does not become oaky.
The finish is relatively long, feisty with some more caramel, chewing tobacco and a soft bitterness at the death.
I quite like this. The oak remains under control and offers up those typical lovely notes you may expect with a nice spiciness. That one goes into the cabinet!