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So, I haven't really done too many Bunnahabhain's in the past but I must admit that as an Islay whisky fan.. a festival release from this distillery does feature in the 'must buy' list for me. This 10 year old expression has been matured for 9 years in a Bourbon cask and one year in a Marsala Wine Cask before being bottled at 56.7%.
Nose: The effects of a year in the Marsala cask can been seen right from the first notes that greet your nose. The whiffs of peat that come through are a lot sweeter than usual and very pleasing too. As soon as you move past them there's a lot of red apples and pears that reveal themselves. Eventually the woody notes from the Bourbon Cask follow through and after a bit of oxidization there's more of the original Islay peat and iodine with some notes of citrus in there too.
Palate: This is probably the strongest aspect of this expression. A nice creamy and smooth delivery does make for a very pleasant experiences. A lot berries .. more apples and some sprinkling of spices. Possibly white pepper.
Finish: More berries that follow through from the palate and some cinnamon too with some more wood . Finally some smoke to sign off leaving you with a nice warm feeling
All in all this a really nice dram... Whether or not it is worth the premium pricing tag that comes with any festival release is debatable.. but for some one who's already bought it and tasted it too .. I can safely say I'm very happy!