The side of the young spirit in Smooth Ambler’s Contradiction shows promise, but we need to wait some years for its full potential.
he initial nosing reveals a soft and round smell with a slightly sharp edge. There are the typical bourbon notes of caramel and honey, both covered with pepper, nutmeg and cinnamon. The older bourbon just manages to handle the sharp young apprentice. The rounder notes of strong coffee, sweet cherries and peach are balanced by spices and a fresher fruitiness. I also find notes of sunflower oil. The complexity falls a bit behind after a while, but it is still ok.
Feels much sharper and younger on the palate. A combination of soft wheat and sharp, spicy and fresh fruity rye. That was probably to be expected, but what disappoints is that the development is rather short. It feels almost if the older and younger spirit cancel each other out. What remains is some nice hints of strawberry cake, cherries, peach covered with multiple spices.
Nose: Salted caramel brownies (yum!), honey dipped almonds and hazelnuts. Moves on to sultanas and raisins soon after.Palate: Rather buttery indeed - think buttered toast with a fresh cup of coffee on the side and you're on the right track. More dried fruit and a subtle vegetal note on the mid palate.Finish: Continued vanilla and farmhouse butter on the long finish.
N: Classic bourbon with a nice mix of vanilla and medicinal - some earthiness too. T: Salty, sweet, buttery and bitter-sweet with burned vanilla, cough sweets, butterscotch, F: So much butterscotch, this reminds me of non other than the Strathclyde 9yo WB I’ve drunk so much of, hick! C: Fab bourbon.
Scores a B[-]
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