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This is a whisky of stunning power, amplitude and depth. I rarely leave the world of single malt Scotch whiskeys because I am typically disappointed by even the grandest attempts by non-Scottish distillers. Not alway, but usually. This one, however, from St. George's Distillery in Norfolk, England, is a distinguished and rousing exception.
This is elemental stuff, earthy and mineral in both its mix of aromas and tastes. Undiluted it is spiritous but pungent and robust. Especially on the nose, it reminds me of things like smooth rocks by a river drying in the hot sun, dry bark, cereal grains, a bit of raw pollen. The mouthfeel is thick but pleasant. The taste is sweetly oaky with drying woody tannins balanced against a sweetness that is neither sugar nor honey, but something in between. Great, but perhaps a bit too powerful for some.
Diluted down to about 100 proof US or a little less, you get a bit of pear with fresh celery, peas and iceberg lettuce. Some notes are a bit difficult to describe, but they are always pleasant nonetheless. Adding water shifts one's experience from autumn (undiluted) to late spring (diluted).
The finish – even diluted – is long, very long, its sweet radiating burn embracing the heart. And it is sweet, malty, a bit nutty, full, with those woody tannins directing the experience to a drying and still pungent and delightful dissipation. I really love this stuff!
I have written a much longer, more poetic and descriptive review on my blog, www.maltfreak.com. Check it out.