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Yet another sample from @Wierdo (4/6). I'm regretting opening them all so soon now as I feel they will need finishing off fairly quickly before the air gets to them too much. It's a tough job, eh? I wanted a bottle of this when it was released but missed out so it's great to get a chance to try this one. Reviews are generally pretty good so here goes.
Nose - Oh yeah! Creosote, slightly nutty (hazelnut? But definitely some almond) raisins, leather, smoke, toffee and this noticeably dry sweetness that's wrapped around the whole lot. This has got better and better in the coupe of weeks it's been open as well - I can imagine a full bottle really coming on with air time.
Taste – Big and peppy. Sweet toffee, fresh ginger and a touch of black pepper with that uniquely Ledaig farmyard (horses stable) peat thing going on. Seemed to have a distinct brandy quality to the taste on first contact that has mellowed and become more of an integrated sweetness. Sweet to dry with a good mouthfeel and easy to sip neat given the abv.
Finish - Med-long with lots of smoke, light toffee and hard, black liquorice. Quite dry too.
Water opens the nose up nicely and lets the sherry cask start to take a bit more control but it never dominates. More high notes emerge along with a touch more oak, pepper and smoke on the palette.
Oh boy this one really hits the spot! The 18 didn’t really grab me but this works very well with the sherry casks used here. It's a unique mix of sweet and peat for sure but it does gel beautifully well with the base spirit. There’s also a clear development from sweet to peat to spice that I really like. Na, I'm underselling this I feel - it's really, really good and for a Ledaig fan who doesn't always get a real buzz out of sherry cask finishes this is heavenly. Shame I missed out on this but the sample is greatly appreciated. A whisky to take on Corryvrekan, perhaps? Big thanks, @Wierdo