This is the standard NAS bottling of Glenrothes - or at least, it used to be as I'm not sure they make this anymore (it's not on their website). Most official Glenrothes bottlings are vintage releases; apparently this is a mix of different vintages, rather than just a super-young throwaway. This comes from a 100ml mini I got at auction.
The colour is a medium amber. On the nose it is juicy malt with vanilla, musty oak, light caramel and a hint of cinnamon. Almond biscotti - but actually quite nutty allround, with crushed walnuts and Brazil nut. Water brings out more malt and citrus. Fairly rich for an NAS single malt.
Fruitier on the palate with red apple skins, dates, raisins and orange peel. Quite spicy with a range of baking spices - clove, cinnamon, nutmeg - as well as some chili heat. Biscuity. Very creamy mouthfeel. More citrusy than the nose, for sure. Milk chocolate. Water evens out many of these notes, but slightly ups the heat. Seemed oakier on the nose, which is interesting. Nice balance of fruit, cereal and spice, quite scrumptious.
The finish is oaky, peppery and thick with caramel and vanilla. As I sit with this, the spice begins to dominate the other notes, which is too bad and it seems to drift out of balance. But it makes for a fairly rich and satisfying dram for a cool Friday evening.