I bought this bottle due to high marks given by Michael Jackson prior to his death. Perhaps in 2004 (the year of his review) this was a suberb bottling, but the 2010 vintage that I have? Not so much.
The nose is nice, I give that much: malt, sherry, some solvent (perhaps orange oil?). But the palate subsequently defies this nice start: an initiation of raisins/fruitcake so typical of Macallan, then ruined by an overwhelming old wood/cork note complimented by gunpowder flintiness. Not good, not good. The lingering finish is very dry and astringent.
Yes: a dry and astringent Macallan. No Macallan should ever taste like cheap Bowmore (for that matter, Bowmore should never taste like cheap Bowmore).
Nothing I have described correlates at all to MJ's review. Macallan missed the mark by a wide margin. Save your money, unless you can find an early vintage. Boo, Macallan, boo.
An Aug update to my July review.
So, I decanted this bottle, hence it's been "breathing" (exposed to air) for 4 weeks. The dram is definitely improved. The chocolate/fig/malt notes are coming through, the astringent/flint notes are fading. I've re-filled back into the original corked bottle, will continue storing now under Private Preserve (the gas wine preserver; I store all my whiskies under PP).
Usually I'm reluctant to decant and breathe. I worry the exposure to oxygen could damage the liquid. But in this case, breathing has helped.
My new score is 80. Still a long ways from MJ's 96 score. But MUCH better than my original 60. Perhaps this bottle will continue to improve. Will keep you posted.