Nose: Stewed Fruit, Sherry, caught on a freshness and spiked with maybe a little ginger? All bound up in a "thickness" that some complex whisky has to me.
Mouth: Incredible meeting of tang and smooth, wonderfully well balanced, very "at home" in the mouth. I get the sweet sherry, but I also get a distant burnt note, mild tobacco perhaps. Very, very pleasing delightful to hold in the mouth for the 25 seconds which sometimes is a struggle for me with some of the older whisky.
After: Maybe not quite as good as the nose and mouth? Sometimes I get a slight disappointment at the end of a first sip of a really, really good dram (and this is a really good dram...)so i'm not to be trusted on the finish but I think here there's a shortage of genius. It's only good. That distant burnt note evaporates, which I like for a finish though, and you get the fruit to the fore again. Having tried again, it's better than I figured it, but it's less good than nose and mouth.
Still, a stonker.
I had the chance to buy a bottle of this (older higher ABV bottling) for $145 a few years back. But I was too busy to make the 100 mile round trip drive. It was a really scenic drive to in some of the prettiest parts of my state. I'm still kicking myself that I didn't make it happen. From what I read online, the older bottling was much better, if you like farmier and older style, than the newer lower ABV bottlings.