This whisky began development in a refill bourbon barrel for just under 3 years & further maturation in a 1st fill bourbon barrel for 6 years.
Appearance: A nice gold/early sunset. A thin tide mark with many short legs (or long teardrops), a nice viscous film and, after a time, some beading along the swirl mark.
Nose: The ABV isn’t hiding on this one, at least not on the nose. Butter and lemon curd on toast, some icing sugar, black pepper and sweet spices. Smouldering leaves, Sherbert Dib Dab and some orange pith. Crème brûlée notes and a chocolate mellowness seep through after a time too.
Palate: A beautiful buttery mouthfeel, almost syrup-like. A nice sweet (caramel)/spice balance, possibly a touch on the side of the spice, in the form of black pepper. Chocolate ice cream develops after a while and adds a much-welcomed layer to an otherwise fairly flat palate. After a few sips, the pepper builds to a mild chilli tingle.
Finish: A pretty good balance between the mellow chocolate sweetness and the pepper. Medium to long. There’s a slightly acrid flavour right at the end which I’m not fond of, but it’s faint.
Overall: It has a great mouthfeel but the flavours, for me, are one-dimensional. A touch of water does transform it, with more sweetness. Not for me though.