A private bottling for a friend of mine. Imperial was initially built as a second distillery for Dailuaine, and the name ‘Imperial’ was to commemorate Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee, which occurred the same year.
Appearance: Yellow gold. A trick jagged and headed ride mark forms above a viscous film which coats the glass with ease. Many thick oozy trails form after a short while and cling motionless.
Nose: A good waft of alcohol and immediate notes of icing sugar, orchard fruits, honey, a little damp cellar funk and tree bark. Orange blossom and a little jam on buttered toast appear soon after. A mellow vanilla cream aroma appears after some time.
Palate: Not particularly oily, a little thin even. Sweet and tingling with chilli and spice. Lots of honey, vanilla and some caramel. The fruit jam and toast appear on the palate too. Some drying occurs at the back of the throat.
Finish: Medium in length. The chilli tingle, honey, some black pepper and vanilla linger for some time. Burnt toast appears right at the end.
Overall: A nice dram, but I can’t help but be left wanting considering the time this took to mature. Something this old should be very special and this isn’t really unfortunately, it’s ‘nice’. There’s good balance and a nice flavour profile though.