Nose: Calm and complex. Butter, shortbread, vanilla, oak, toffee, cashews, apples, pears, gentle baking spices, and marmalade. Excellent nose, as inviting as they get.
Palate: A quiet arrival. Medium bodied, maybe a bit oily. Baking spices first, with apple, toffee, nuts, butter, éclairs, marmalade, and barley.
Finish: Medium-long and dynamic. Butter, pineapple, honey, cream, cashews, macadamia, shortbread, coconut, granola, orange candy, black coffee, roasted malt, and lingering spices.
Thoughts: It’s certainly not a whisky in a rush. An easy sipper with plenty to explore. I like the wood here. It’s woody and fruity, but the oak and sherry aren’t too forward. In fact the spirit still has much to say after 21 years. And the wood has imparted a gentle, sturdy spice compliment which lingers just behind the core flavours of butter, toffee, vanilla, nuts, and fruit. We’ve even got a touch of that coconut note which I love so much in the 10.
Overall this is a great bang-for-buck bottle. It’s surprisingly affordable and suitably complex for a 21 year old. But while the flavours offer plenty of complexity, the actual character of the whisky is quite straightforward. Not a flashy whisky. Instead it’s a refined and delicious example of a well-aged highlander. Recommended.