Appearance: Dark, rich amber gold.
Nose: Sweet smokiness of a fading wood fire with the fruity richness of ripe plums. The smoke soon parts to reveal a layer of honeyed malt and creamy toffee. Further in, there’s a subtle medley of cedar-wood, menthol and refreshing red fruit, gently edged by dark chocolate and vanilla. It’s softer with water, but still sweet, with smoke and maritime notes. Ripe red fruit emerges on a bed of rich, sweet toffee, while the smoke recedes in favour of floral notes on a buttery biscuit base, still with hints of menthol and cedar.
Body: Medium. Softly textured.
Palate: Smooth and mouth-coating: the spicy pepper on the tongue rapidly grows into peatiness with a difference, as a creamy smokiness mingles with spice and dark fruits. The earthy, soft notes found in a fine chocolate tart are balanced by the bite of red fruit, cherry or plum; then a wave of softly drying volcanic smoke introduces superb, mouth-filling malt. It’s softer and sweeter with water; rounded and minty, with that spicy wood leading a sublime, smoky-savoury and sweetly aromatic flavour development.
Finish: Long, memorable and mouth-filling, leaving on the tongue an appealing and intense cocoa-rich drying smokiness.