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gift sample from a friend
Nose: Oh man, this is the sort of thing that I go for. It starts very waxy with a bit of clean, light honey. Lemon zest, quince, mirabelle jam. Some wood and vanilla. A few high-pitch floral notes and nuts, reminding me somewhat of a Folle Blanche cognac in its youth. This is elegance in a bottle. Very light chocolate malt, clotted cream, coconut shavings. Nectarines, apricot, and tangerines for the fruit - more distinct with air. Incredible. (with water) Water brings out more of the wax and wood, as well as the honey and dried fruit quality. Maybe even a hint of grass and sawdust. Still a total champ.
Palate: Holy shmokes. Holy smokes. BANG! Big. Waxy, smoky, and a little malty sweet. Lemon zest (from the best lemons of Sorrento, no less),dried fruits - same as from the nose. Honey sweet star fruit, and some oak. It's really perfect and awesomely punchy. The wood keeps everything in line. Mirabelle jam from France (as is proper.) Have I ever mentioned that I love mirabelles? (With water) Highlights the wood, wax, zest, honey, and vanilla. Some of the fruit becomes less distinct, but it keeps the core elements going.
Finish: Endless and the same. Doesn't lose anything. This is just glorious. Punchy as hell, and gracefully elegant. I love Clynelish, and this reminds me of my favorite (waxy, non-smoky) Clynelishes, only better. It may be a bit big and punchy for some, but if its your sort of thing, then it's really, really great. Depending on my mood, I could really score this up - so, somewhere around A/A+, but let's call it a bit in the middle for now.