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I picked this up around the same time last year (November) up along side the Glendronach 12 year old as a start into the "non-chill filtered" world of scotch. With that being said, this review will be based on my first encounter with a non-chill filtered whisky and equally important to note - a whisky that doesn't have any E 150 (colour) added. This whisky sticks to the core "root" of whisky making and keeps the process as pure as possible from start to finish. Can ya tell I'm excited?!
Nose: A really huge smack in the face of pungent honey glazed orangey peat. Massive amounts of citrus going on here. The nose on this is huge. Like a plum of oranges and tangerines coming at me. The peat in the back is literally fighting to stay alive, and somehow it does, yet very faintly. This is quite fruity and now I'm getting a hint of smoke. Extremely timid. Dropping in some water brings out a little more wood and tames the citrus.
Palate: Syrupy, oaky, woody, oily, spicy, sweet, salty, thick, WOW! Explosive and rich in nature. This is chewy scotch. A very, very faint hint of smoke, but not enough to really talk about. The prominent flavours here are a fruity, yet full-bodied salty-sweetness (perhaps sherry in this case) that bounces off the wood and light honey glazed peat that's extremely enjoyable. This is soooo good I can't stress that enough.
Finish: A nice peppery and peaty roll off, with hints of honey, salt and….. I'm gonna have another pour thank you very much. The finish on this one lasts awhile and the sweet-oak-wood note lurks around for quite some time. Excellent.
Conclusion - A robust and complex dram. Are all non-chill filtered scotches this good? I sure hope so, I'll definitely be looking into the 15 year old from Springbank. I'm sold.