Wow. Mature peat meets mature sherry. These two flirty ol’ folks can stay liplocked all night as far as I’m concerned. This is like a fine old flick from decades back where the romance sweeps you up in its arms almost as if it were you on screen staring into the eyes of Audrey Hepburn or whichever faded old starlet lit your lamp.
If rumors hold any truth, this blended malt is comprised of 19 year old Dalmore, 21 year old Fettercairn and…yes!…25 year old Ardbeg. An odd marriage, but a stunner. What a truly remarkable vatting to pull off a profile this large and a balance this absolute.
Smoke and cracked black pepper. Briny, but with a fruity underbelly. There is a neat little undercurrent of jam or jelly or something. Kinda inexplicable. Sort of like Amaretto…or Cherry Coke…or Dr. Pepper. Big bursting purple grapes, and a lovely fresh biscuit-y quality. Mince and mint. Oodles more, so much that I could pick out nuances for paragraph after paragraph, but alas…you’d be bored and I’d be ‘scent-logged’ to cop a phrase from a favorite German author.
Again…phenomenal balance between peat and sweet, even on the palate. Slightly tannic ashiness here bobs and weaves on a salty wash and hits that grape wine-iness early on. The smoke coalesces and looms larger and larger the longer you hold it. For such a woefully underpowered dram (40%? For whiskies of this age? C’mon!) the finish has a surprising staying power.
Quite simply one of the best vatted malts I have ever tasted. Brilliant stuff. A little thin at 40%, but still…close enough for this guy.
– Reviewed by: Curt
– Photo: Curt