This is the type of single malt that just doesn't exist anymore. Perhaps, stored away in a warehouse somewhere, lie a highly aged cask or two that still contain liquid of this calibre.
The palate pretty much matches the diversity and quality of the nose, which is a rarity as whiskies get this old. If I were a rich man (yada didi dada didi pidi dooby dooby do), I would love to try this head-to-head with some other top notch Springbanks. I think this cask 493 would stand strong against the 35 Millennium, the dark version of the 1995 release 30 year-old, local barley cask 443, and the 12 year-old 100 proofs of the mid 1990s.
In short: a spectacular whisky and worthy of its position in the top 25.
EDIT: how did this make it into the top 10? Don't get me wrong, it's incredibly good, but not "top-ten-of-all-time" good. What is going on with this websites ratings recently? Far too much score pumping that coincides with duplicitous auction market activity.
A tropical party with some light diesel fuel and charcoal smoke! Grilled peaches, grilled pineapples, grilled passion fruits, candied orange peels, and touches of old leather or unlit cigars. With time, notes of maple syrup and blackberry jam emerge and become dominant.
This has one of the best mouthfeels I've ever experienced. Legitimately in the top 10. Unbelievably oily and incredibly clinging to the throat and tongue. Not really drying, rather luscious and juicy. Makes you salivate. All the aforementioned barbecued fruits are present with clear flavours of burning tobacco and motor oil. Even cooking spices come out like cloves, tamarind, and curry. Truly exceptional complexity here, it might be a touch better than the nose!
A little more sour fruits than the ripe tropical fruits of the nose and palate, but they're in abundance. The peat and smoke are stronger here but there's also hints of super dark chocolate (like 90%+ dark cocoa) and freshly cracked black pepper. A truly long finish, it goes on for over 5 minutes. Leaves you speechless.