The nose delivered an immediate, unmistakable blast of vanilla smoke – then cigar ash, walnut shells, polished wood pharmacy counters – eventually pine forest freshness. To taste, the smoke had a more tarry character (the taste left after working with bitumen roofing sheets), Buckley’s Mixture and eucalyptus – the balancing sweetness reminded us of aniseed-flavoured Liquorice Allsorts and blackjack chews (liquorice, blackcurrant). The reduced nose had cleaner, more clinical smoke, causing one panellist to recall a journey on the Jacobite steam train (wood, leather, smoke, heather, pine). The palate now flooded our mouths with sweet, succulent easy-drinking joy – restrained hickory smoke and blackcurrant Tunes.
Drinking tip: To make the last hour of the day (before bed) into something special
Colour: Unripe barley Cask: Refill barrel Age: 12 years Date distilled: March 2004 Alcohol: 58.5% USA allocation: 84 bottles