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The Nose: Mmmmm…all sweet and hardly any peat. Bourbon-y brown sugar and Maraschino cherries. There’s a chewy caramel roll/sticky bun quality as well. Lots of sherry tones come out as well, ripe raisin as well as smooth oak. Lush, fairly voluptuous, and comforting.
The Palate: After that rich, inviting nose, the entry was a little empty, which was surprising and a little disappointing. It was sweet and smooth but in a way, kind of like simple syrup, I was expecting more complexity and depth. Things become more interesting with candied orange notes, oaked sherry and a pleasant spiciness, with a little cinnamon towards the end.
The Finish: Sweet, dusty and spicy in just the right balance. The finish isn’t all that long, but it feels just about right. 16 years worth of oak notes linger on a bit.
Thoughts: There’s a lot to like here, but for me, that kind of empty, almost weak entry keeps it from being a really stellar dram. It has a wonderful nose and great balance between the sweet, sherry flavors and the wood, it just seems to fall apart a bit when it first hits the lips.