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Weird. I've read several of the reviews here, and none seem to resemble my experience. Such is the mystery of the single malt!
Nose: Clynelish is supposedly famous for its waxiness, and I definitely detect the sweet candle wax aromas here. But far more prominent to me is a spicy sting, like freshly cut jalapenos, seedy mustard, or even horseradish. I'm not at all certain that Clynelish is actually a peated whisky, but there's a definite herbal, wet-grass mustiness that I would normally associate with peat. Adding water brings forth hints of sugary fruits. A unique nose, to say the least.
Body: light and waxy in texture.
Palate: Predominantly spicy, just like the nose. While there are gentle white chocolate, honey, and stewed apple undercurrents, my mouth is mostly on fire with the sensation of hot, juicy peppers and briny salt. Also a dark tea bitterness.
Finish: Short in the throat, but long and bitter on the tongue.
This was a really unique experience, and honestly, I'm almost reluctant to rate it at this point. I've tried this twice, once with a group of friends and tasted against four other drams and once alone and tasted on its own terms, but in neither case do I feel like I really understand its nature. This is unlike any other whisky I've had, and I find it challenging. Whenever I don't immediately love a truly one-of-a-kind whisky, my suspicion is that it'll grow on me and become a beloved favorite. Having said that, at the moment, I don't love it. I find this more a weird than satisfying experience, and I don't think I'd reach for it often but for my determination to become more familiar with what it has to offer. I'm open to this score changing down the road, but for now, I'll call it 82/100.