Like most of us on Connosr, I'm a sucker for cask-strength whiskies. So when I saw this new offering from Forty Creek, I was intrigued. Even more so when I saw the peculiar bottling strength. According to Jason Hambrey's blog, this bottling was made by re-distilling mature whiskies in a single pass through copper pots and then aging for five years in first-fill and refill bourbon casks. The result came out of the cask at 48.5%.
On the nose there is alcohol, and toasted nuts. Walnut and praline. Vanilla and caramel. The nose is somewhat subtle, yet has depth. Over time, stone fruit and citrus emerge. Apricot with lemon and orange zest.
On the palate this whisky is robust, thick, and mouth-filling. The sweetness of honey greets the centre of the tongue and then oak spices come rushing in from all sides. Coffee-like bitterness adds balance.
The finish is where this really shines. Not only is it long, but the flavours develop further with the toasted nuts and dried apricot leading the way.
Re-distilling mature whisky seems like a dubious prospect for a special release, but it proves to be a good choice here. The oak and grain flavours are concentrated to wonderful effect. The Forty Creek profile of off-dry nuttiness and stone fruits is intact and bolstered by extra intensity.