The nose delivered a mellifluous flood of honeycomb, toffee and golden syrup sweetness; then deeper notes of charred wood, glazed ribs on a barbeque and salty ship’s timbers. The palate was rich, deep and pretty big – warming and mouth-coating with treacle toffee, tarry ropes, smoky bacon crisps, bonfire embers and liquorice paper roll-ups. The reduced nose had charred heather stems (moor-burn by the sea), burnt toffee, and well-fired white bread crusts, salted caramel and balsamic oysters. With water (and it takes plenty), the palate found the peat smoke, charred staves and cigar ash elbowing the butterscotch sweetness slightly into the background.
Cask: Refill Sherry puncheon Age: 12 years Date distilled: May 2004 Alcohol: 65.2% USA allocation: 60 bottles