There's obvious age and immediate enjoyability, but something seems lost in the new release. The fruit isn't as sherry-rich and there's a darker, more bitter or tannic vein running through it. It's nice, but it lacks something to make it worth coming back to at the price.
Time shifts the nose to oxidized orchard fruits, cold fruit pies/cobbler, dried pineapple cubes and candied ginger, with a distant scent of old books kept in cardboard boxes.
Water brings out malt and vanilla on the nose and dulls the fruit and spice. Similarly, brings out malt on the palate, but dulls the other flavors. Water is not recommend.
Fresh orchard fruits (Fuji and Granny Smith apples), the distant smell of macerated berries and cut oranges, baking fruit pies and cobbler, oak spice with a touch of high cocoa dark chocolate, and white and tropical fruit candies (think pastels and haribo gummy bears) fading to ginger and earthy garden herbs.
Dark chocolate covered freshly cut fruits, a flash of floral honey, baked fruit and oak spice, sharp cinnamon candy that lingers, and licorice root tea sweetened with bittersweet molasses.
A touch of bittersweet floral, and a long fade out of high cocoa hot chocolate powder, sharp baking spices (cardamom), and oak tannins.