It’s always very interesting to try and discover new distilleries. Well, Dalmunach isn’t around that long. It has been built on the ruins of what formerly was Imperial distillery. This new working horse for Pernod Ricard has been housed in a hyper modern building. The stills have exactly the same shape as the stills used for the Imperial whiskies, only these are sized up a few feet. Everything seems to be about size and capacity here. So the big question is; will it become a typical blendfiller and nothing more than that, or will they produce and age a spirit and eventually a whisky to fall for? I’m very curious for this first meeting I’m about to experience.
Since this is a rather young whisky, 3 years and a few months, it is a rather bold decision to finish it on Marsala. And to be honest it is a lot of Marsala to take in. But..it works out very well for me! The hard part though, is to learn something about the Dalmunach character. There is a lot of grape here. It has a sweet, rich and spiced nose. Full on flavors. Red fruits, delicate wine infused oak and loads of Arabic orientated spices and dried herbs. There is a fresh kind of red apple-like fruitiness going on as well. I would say this is where the typical fruity Speyside character is hiding. It’s definitely there. With oxidation (left the cap off for a night) and a shipload of water it does reveal more. I get more fruitiness from red apples, wild peach, vanilla and more clear fresh minty notes. It certainly got more dimensional.
It definitely has got a very friendly and accessible palate, but it does need some water to get there. But hey, 3yo at 59%... It’s soft and very creamy. Again very rich. More typical Speyside fruit flavors here. Also more usual suspects like vanilla, cream and nutmeg. But also the wine is very present. In a good way. The taste has gotten a little less accessible after a night of oxidation. It needs water more then before. Also it’s a bit more dry. Flavourwise it didn’t do a lot of change.
Medium length and very tasteful. The young age never turns into something disturbing. Soft, sweet and gentle in the finish. Subtle spices and again a herbal dryness. Dried red fruit and raisins. More fruitiness and vanilla are present after a night of oxidation.
To wrap it all up I don’t think it’s possible to describe the Dalmunach character very properly already after just this dram, but it does work quite nice with a Marsala cask in my opinion. I find this a pleasant ‘first date’ but I definitely still want to try some bourbon aged material Dalmunach.