I'm so glad I haven't splashed out on a whole bottle of this uneventful whisky and tried it in a whisky bar.
NOSE: a touch of menthol, raspberries, dense berry candy nose with a touch of berberis. Reminds me a lot of its younger brother the 12 yo sherried Macallan.
TASTE: some caramel, silky smooth, sweet dried fruits along with some stale dried fruits towards the finish.
FINISH: swift, not a lot to write home about, tea tannins.
OVERALL IMPRESSION: thank god for whisky bars. I would've been really bummed out about buying a whole bottle of this shockingly expensive, under-delivering malt.
@Georgy, in the case of Macallan, I would not call its current continued popularity marketing, I would call it reputation. "Back in the day", which is to say 40+ years ago, Macallan made whisky with beautiful clean sherry. The appetite for Cask Strength was not so popular then as it is now, and Macallan was one of the 6 or 8 Scottish distilleries to make single malt widely available outside of blends. Macallan got a big head start for quality and availability in the larger marketplace. That reputation persists in many quarters, often for lack of comparative experience with other brands. Most of the people who pedestalise Macallan now are not whisky connoisseurs with broad experience, but people who knew the whisky, or the reputation of the whisky, through the years...and, of course "brand ambassadors".
Right now, even when it succeeds in achieving clean sherry, which is rarely any more, the MAC 18 is just ridiculously expensive compared to its competitors. I had a 375 ml bottle of the 1991 MAC 18, which was quite enjoyable, but the sherry was not clean. I liked that bottle, which I considered expensive at $ 65 at the time, but I would not go anywhere near MAC 18 at current prices, which are double that price.
@Bluenote Well, if you're asking, The Amrut Peated CS is one of my favourite whiskies ever. I have only had the regular peated once at a tasting, and it was good, but the CS version is MAGICAL! Especially with the Ashok manoeuvre.
You can find, I believe, both the original edition in cardboard box or later batches in metal cannisters. and last time I saw a photo of a shelf, within the last 1-2 months, they were going for $90 +/- $10.
For a sherried , there are essentially 2 choices. The Intermediate Sherry will run you just over $100 if you can find it for a good price. My brother in law saw it for $$117 but had a $25 coupon in September.
The other option if available is a single cask bottling but it will likely cost more.
Amrut has a number of excellent non-sherry offerings too. The cask strength (either 2007 edition or a later batch) usually costs about $10 less than the peated CS, and is excellent, and bourbon -atured single casks are exceptional. And the "only" 50% ABV Fusion is more lightly peated and quite tasty. The 46% single malt is also very good.
So I would lead with IS and Peated CS but there's not much you can go wrong with.