This Speyside, with an outrun of 285 bottles, was finished in a first-fill Rancio Sec Hogshead.
Appearance: Amber with a definite pinkish hue. Many medium trails gently seep towards the surface through a viscous film. The swirl mark eventually beads up and slowly morphs into teardrops and droplets.
Nose: As you’d expect from nearly 60%, a decent hit of ethanol. This is followed by icing sugar, foam and chewy sweets (especially Fruit Salads and those banana and toffee chews) and apple Chewits. Toffee, caramel and forest floor/leaf litter next (my first thought was toffee-covered leaves!). Many deep and rich flavours run through this dram, like a box of high Cocoa content chocolates, slightly bitter, but also decadent. An almost smokey aroma swirls around too. The more I nose this one, the more an intensely fruity vein appears through it. For a 10yo, this dram has an amazingly deep and complex aroma profile.
Palate: An immediate ABV tingle on the tongue, but coated in a buttery mouthfeel and flavour. That fruit syrup vein runs through the palate too, from the start. The second sip is just a wonderful balance of gentle spice, creamy notes and that fruit indulgence. These lovely flavours simply remain while you sip, no surprises, just beautifully married flavours.
Finish: The fruit, subtle spice tingle and a little ABV heat last for a medium length of time.
Overall: Banger. Gonna search for a bottle now.