Time to inaugurate a new type of sample series. For those of you familiar with Nozinan Mini and Sample Series, I’ve recently received some “Mystery samples”. Discovering what they are has been quite fun and I’d like to differentiate them from some of the other reviews that I do, as the mystery is part of the experience.
This one came from @OdysseusUnbound. It was poured from a freshly opened bottle. He was kind enough to wait until I tasted it before posting about it. I first tased it a couple of weeks ago, and I will spare you most of the iMessages we exchanged but it went something like this:
Me: I have smelled this before.
Him: It wouldn’t surprise me. It’s not a unicorn or a $100000000 bottle.
Me: My first thought was Redbreast 12 YO CS (but I compared the nose and it was not)
Me: Smells like Scotch. Whoa! Definitely high ABV. Tastes unleaded. (I think I meant unpeated) I assume you’ve tasted this.
Me: I really like the nose. It makes me think of Glenlivet Nadurra but I know those are no longer available. It’s too strong for the 18. All the while [@odysseusunbound] is laughing because it’s Canadian Club. I would guess a bourbon cask.
Him: Ha, I don’t think I’m spoiling anything by stating it is NOT CANADIAN CLUB.
Me: So far my list includes Glenlivet Nadurra NAS, Writer’s Tears CS, Glenfiddich Special bottling at high ABV that I haven’t tried before. I don’t think it’s Amrut CS or Redbreast 12 YO CS.
I later guessed correctly that it was Scottish, that it was bourbon cask matured, that the ABV was above 50%. I was offered the hint of “Speyside”. Then it was time to commit:
Me: Glenlivet Nadurrra NAS.
This expression, bottled in July 2016, is reviewed in my usual manner, allowing it to settle after which I take my nosing and tasting notes, followed by the addition of a few drops of water, waiting, then nosing and tasting.
Rich, Honey. Green apple, sweet syrup. Floral. Fruity. Hint of cinnamon. Nice nose but narrow spectrum of smells. No change with addition of water.
Hot. Sweet, fruity. Definite alcohol burn on first sip. Rich mouth feel. Water tones down the burn a little. (21.5/25)
Peppery finish, a little bitter. Alcohol burn at the fade. Medium long. Water changes the bitterness to a little more pepperiness (20.5/25)
The nose and palate are remarkably similar. What you smell is what you taste. Not too complex.
Score: Neat - 83.5/100 With Water: 84.5/100
This one has the definitive Glenlivet signature. Not an unpleasant dram with a little water.
As I get older I probably shouldn’t trust my memory as much as I used to. I have not had much Nadurra, but this one seems to taste younger and less refined, and not as (sorry @paddockjudge) smooth as the 16 YO Nadurra of yesteryear.
I’ve saved a half ounce vial of this as a reference sample in case I get a chance to put it up against the original Nadurra 16 YO.
Thanks again @Odysseusunbound for this opportunity!