This Stagg is 15 years old, bottled in 2006. Apparently the Buffalo Trace Antique Collection was not yet conceived, for this one got the title Hazmat III, whatever that means. Anyway, I am putting it next to Staggs from 2010 and 2011 (I already had the 2012). With an ABV above 70%, I keep my bottle of water close by.
The nose is very aromatic on apples and red fruit (cherry), loads of honey and syrup. Very sweet, indeed. Underlying hints of brown bread and milk chocolate. Vanilla and caramel. Intense!
It sets your mouth aflame. Oak, cloves, pepper and a handful of other spices, before it softens up and turns very sweet again. Loads of red, but also dark fruit. Hints of licorice candy, but also coconut. Pear drops. All very intense, just like the nose.
The finish is long and spicy with a touch of aniseed on the deathbed, mildly drying.
A-ma-zing. Very intense bourbon, that can cope with a lot of water.