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Here’s the Select Oak. It’s a 1L no age statement travel retail offering. It’s made using American oak bourbon casks, first fill American oak casks, and European oak casks that have been treated with sherry. It seems a lot of these no aged whiskies get some pretty elaborate wood treatments. I suppose it’s something to talk about in lieu of an age. Or maybe I’m being too harsh too soon. I like bourbon and sherry and America and Europe and oak. Could be worth a go.
Nose: Classic Macallan, maybe a bit simple. Gentle Baking spices. Cinnamon, nutmeg, anise, vanilla, apple, sultanas, sherry, apricot.
Palate: Light mouthfeel. Gentle spices, red apple, sultanas, brown sugar, caramel, and gentle peppercorn.
Finish: Continuation of the palate. Baking spices, gentle cinnamon, nutmeg, brown sugar, coffee, caramel popcorn, and oak.
Thoughts: This is quite nice, if a little uninspired. Standard, pleasant, easy stuff. I don’t think all that cask jumping was necessary, though. All its fancy (over)production might have detracted rather than added to the final character. But that’s not to say that it’s without charm. This is well-balanced stuff, and Macallan’s sherry and baking spices are always pleasant. And the caramel popcorn note on the finish is fun. This is classic Macallan without any bells and whistles. But I've been known to enjoy bells, and even the occasional whistle, so this one’s hard to get excited about. As it goes with so many Macallans, more punch would make it interesting. Turn 40% into 46% and I could call this a good whisky. As it stands this is decent, but there are plenty of better and more characterful whiskies for the price, I think.