I was wowed by this when I first opened bottle number 124, but that was some years ago. From a 10cl decanted sample, let’s see how my palate sees things now.
N: Far less sherried than I’d remembered. Actually appears more a bourbon matured malt with a [refill] sherry finish. Also of note, nice grainy dunnage-y vibes with dirty garage oils, Caramac, malt biscuits, ginger cake, dried whey/milk powder, stale dry salty crisp notes with suggestions of pickled onion & Worcester sauce crisp flavourings alongside earthy/sandy notes, fruity dry vanilla wafers, Cillit Bang? …. All sorts as I remembered from before. It’s also rather coppery.
T: Hugely desirable start. Succulent, vibrant and slightly oily yet desirably dry-hessian/husky & coppery with aniseed/peppery action thereafter. This simply blazes initially, though where’s that sherry action? Refill PX possibly? The sherry action appears merely as the icing on the bourbon cake base.
F: With the appearance of a lovely barley bourbon > sherry cask fusion, there’s an wood-echoe-y yet talkative light fungal-bungal-tastic finish.
C: Sherry/bourbon, who cares. This is super whisky. Let’s come back to it another time.
TAKE 2 [a few months later]
N: Even this decanted sample has blossomed a few months after opening, oozing thick rich grain juice, ginger honey, the fluffiest cottonwool candy floss and ripe fruits along with a double-sweet raspberry coulis, the jammiest Jammy Dodgers, apricot jams,… amazing!!
T: It’s huge so get that water in! The cask drives hard but with water comes the malt-thick, herbal/green-grassy beer & barley sugar driving distillate – desirably lush and yet also bone-dry. Those favourably dirty coppery tones come through once again, on the turn.
F: That’s one lovely ride.
C: My, that nose. And overall, unique, lively and fabulous. Well kept bottles from this cask may become future classics. Scores say 91, for now!!!