A.D. Rattray Balmenach 2010 Bourbon Hogshead then finished in a Sauternes Barrique / #12 / 54.8% ABV (£70). A 12yo matured in Bourbon Hogshead for 10 yrs / Sauternes Barrique for 22 months. Limited to 302 bottles.
Appearance: Honey gold, with a beaded tide mark. Again, that alien skin effect is formed in the film from the viscous ripples and lovely thick legs.
Nose: A balanced nose with no particular aroma leaping forward initially. Spring water, barley sweets, cereal and vanilla wafer hit after a time. The ABV is carried well, it doesn;t interfere with anything.
A confectionary sweetness increases with time, foam shrimps. Derelict house, that ‘old’ non-descript smell (maybe cellar).
Palate: A pleasing semi-viscous mouthfeel. White pepper and lemon pepper with some drying. The vanilla element carries through fromm the nose, more creamy now.
The spice heat increases with each sip, building to a chilli tingle. Some butterscotch and a Christmas edge appear now too. It’s like the spice is cloaked by the more easy-going buttery sweetness, then, pow, hits you!
A funk also makes itself known as the finish begins (if that makes sense?).
Finish: Medium in length. Funky sweet spices, lemon pepper and butterscotch.
Overall: I like it, it’s not bang on my preferred style but it’s a lovely balanced dram and the ABV works really well. I’m not a huge sauternes fan though