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Distribution of ratings for this:
First vapor: Starts like mahogany wood and maybe yesterday's smoked pipe. These give way quickly to a sweetness...
Nose: Toffee more than honey, over a background of vanilla and faint mixed apples. Citrus rind tickles the nose like a muted peppery spice. A light toffee-apple with a zesty sting. Nose2: After a few minutes breathing, the toffee is more like crusty dough; the apples are more like pear; and the spice more like cinnamon. A baked cinnamon-pear tart. Nose 3: With even more time, smoothens to a creamy pudding of lemon and ginger.
Palate: Big sour green apple peels make a big splash. Then this crashes out into pleasant vanilla... turning creamy lemon, and then bringing peppery oak spices like nutmeg and ginger, over dry pear.
Finish: The spices temporarily fade to potpourri as a vanilla smoothness revisits; then lemon lingers and brings back the oak spices-- possibly anise but definitely nutmeg.
I was pleasantly surprised by the balance: The fruits are strong even though they are light, but it is not too sweet. Oak brings strong but pleasant spices (which for instance are absent in the 18), with the only upset being on the entrance. I usually prefer having at least a touch of sherry element to bring depth and balance-- But if you prefer scotches with predominantly oaky (and bourbon) character, then this is one of the best expressions that I have encountered.