Appearance: White dessert wine. A jagged hairline tide mark when swirled. This immediately morphs into many beads. A few medium legs form and cling to the glass like glue. A semi-viscous film coats the inside of the glass for an age.
Nose: A good vanilla-heavy ethanol wave hits, followed by mild caramel/toffee faint garden mint. Fruit crumble notes next, in the form of pastry, brown sugar and orchard fruits. After a few sniffs, there’s a more confectionary sweetness, as well as leather boots and lemonade. The spongecake note, that I get with a few Hazelburns, is also present.
Palate: Quite spicy, with mild chilli and lime pickle. Blackberry, oak and honey arrive next, adding a sweetness to balance the initial spice and tanginess. Chocolate caramel and nuts, so, basically a Snickers bar!
Finish: Medium in length. Some drying with the bitter chocolate, slight citrus and black pepper. Some bitter citrus now, like preserved lemon slices.
Overall: It’s a very pleasant dram. I prefer the 56% handfill as it’s more fruit-forward and friendly.