It's a 50ml sample given by a friend, I forgot to ask when was the bottle opened. This whisky is triple-distilled single malt which is aged in three types of casks: oloroso, bourbon and port wine.
Nose: Fruity and slightly sweet. Dark fruit, raisin, dark chocolate, peanut butter and licorice.
Palate: Maple sugar, port, sherry, vanilla, cinnamon and spice. The flavors mixed well together, rich and sophisticated, tastes so smooth with moderate sweetness and a touch of tannin.
Finish: Syrup, raspberry ,barley and spice. Soft, clean and short.
Balance: For a 40% ABV whisky it is quite concentrated and complex, the port wood really delivers the fruity, winy and sweet flavors, and it tastes clean and less malty due to triple distillation.
Overall: A well-matured Irish whisky, round and enjoyable, the port cask's influence is very prominent. Lusher and rounder than Glenmorangie Quinta Ruban, Bushmill 16 yo is worth trying if you like wine cask finish, rum drinker might find this attractive too.
@mystycreek, in the "Irish good value for the money" and maybe reasonable availability (one hopes) I would also suggest Jameson Black Barrel. Prices for the Jameson premium products have gone way up recently, but Black Barrel remains fairly reasonably priced, at least here. I don't know whether it is sold in Taipei. Standard Jameson is very batch variable, and can be anything from quite good to downright bad. I never take a chance buying a bottle with that degree of batch variation, without having tasted from the exact batch in advance. So far I haven't tasted any bad Black Barrel. Can you get Connemara Cask Strength there? That's a good one. In the peated category, of course. Standard Connemara is a bit anemic. I used to have a nice Irish Whiskey Desert Island List, but that is currently in mothballs, aka Connosr data storage. Stuff like Jameson 12 yo and Gold are ones I usually like (batch variation I hear recently, though, in the Gold), but they have gotten pretty pricey. As with most around here, I am also very much a fan of both the CS and standard Redbreast 12 YOs...and Bushmills Black Bush.
@mystycreek, thanks for a very nicely written review. I wish I could taste from that bottle you are reviewing. I don't doubt that Bushmills 16 could turn out well, but both bottles from which I have previously sampled did not turn out well, mostly because of sulphur contamination. Batch variation is a big thing in whiskey. Bushmills 21 yo is a whiskey of great beauty. For me, though, I wouldn't consider buying a bottle of the Bushmills 16 yo without tasting from that batch first.