The nose, unfortunately, is the best part of this whisky: Espresso, forest loam on a wet spring day, dark chocolate, lightly burnt croissant, fine sherry with a woodiness coming through at the end.
I just purchased this bottle and boy am I disappointed. The owner of the liquor store highly recommended it. What a mistake.
The mouth feel is generous and the initial taste is marvelous, but it falls apart and leaves the tongue feeling acrid. Also, faintly in the backdrop of the palette, there is a faint "eau de toilette" of what day old urine smells like in a hot climate when you forget to shut the bathroom door and it begins to waft through the house. This faint hint of nastiness in the palette and finish did remind me of a summer spent in California when the general public was encouraged by the government to save water by not flushing unless absolutely necessary. Sorry to mention this heretofore lost memory, but hey, the faint hint of urine is there, and the memory resurfaced. No big deal, but not what you want to be drinking! Still, in all fairness, the barnyardy taste is certainly not prominent at all. Rather, it is faint enough to make you question your own judgement until you take another sip, and then notice that, yes, it is real, and it is there, unfortunately.
There is no cork spoilage in this bottle. It is just a disappointing whisky to me. If it was not for the "bardyardy" side of it, I would like it just fine.
Alas, I should have read the ratings on Whisky Connosr more carefully before buying. I set off for the liquor store expecting to buy the Cigar malt and let myself be talked out of it by the owner. He meant well, so I do not blame him. Most likely, the batches have gone downhill of late.
Five days earlier, I tasted the Dalmore Cigar Malt at the Highland Stillhouse and loved it, even though it was the whisky equivalent of a really good milkshake--kind of juvenile and fun loving in a carefree way. It seemed a little too sweet in a "manufactured" sense of the word, but I liked it enough to head out in search of some within five days of tasting it.
The price of the Cigar Malt was also a deterrent. In Oregon, the Cigar Malt costs $130 and the 15 costs $95. Neither bottle would be worth that price, in my opinion. I will never buy a bottle of Dalmore again. Oh well.
However, this said, I will keep this bottle forever. It is the coolest frickin whisky bottle I have ever owned by far, even if it, like the whisky, is a bit over the top and gimmicky.
If I could go back in time, I would have rather paid an extra $35 for the Cigar Malt. At least I would have avoided the barnyardy bravado, dark caramel color and all, that, to me, is Dalmore 15. I really did enjoy the Cigar Malt. It was, as they say, a guilty pleasure. Would I buy another glass of it at the Highland Stillhouse. I'm afraid so, and I probably will.
@casualtorture Dalmore 18yo at Hong Kong is a bargain? I heard a lot of people in Hong Kong flying to Taiwan to buy whiskies, since Hong Kong's liquor tax(over 30% ABV) is 100% and Taiwan only 2.5NTD for every one percent ABV per liter(70NTD for a bottle of 40% 0.7L whisky, about 2USD ). Dalmore 18 yo here is about 130USD or 870RMB now in the duty free shop.
So, my little advice is, come to Taiwan for a little holiday, and buy some good whisky if you are looking for real bargain.