8 March 2016

05/03/2016 March outturn at the SMWS

A new outturn and a rare chance to catch up with JH, whose jet-setter life is keeping him away from these gatherings.
JS joins us, as well as newcomer T.

41.70 34yo d.1980 C'est magnifique! (48.6%, SMWS Society Single Cask, 2nd Ffill Sauternes Hogshead, 102b): this is recommended by the staff, though even they have a hard time not mentioning the price tag -- only £50 shy of the official bottling's that came out a few months ago. Nose: lots of sawdust, toasted coconut shavings, cinnamon and nutmeg, then lime juice. Honeysuckle is well present too. Mouth: peppery custard, with a velvety texture and a distinct spiciness. Finish: lots of wood spices again, sawdust; it is drying. An OK dram, though too woody, to be honest. And too pricy for the quality. 8/10

50.76 25yo d.1990 Booze up in a bakery (59.1%, SMWS Society Single Cask, Refill ex-Bourbon Barrel, 150b): nose: very powerful honeysuckle, a hint of skunk (JS), then sugar takes off -- dark moscovado sugar. Mouth: velvety and coating, with creamy cake. Finish: the most lovely milk chocolate, at this stage. Another superb 50. Keep them coming. 8/10

Not Lea, Lychee!
9.104 27yo d.1988 Lychee Martini (55.5%, SMWS Society Single Cask, Refill ex-Sherry Butt, 504b): nose: JH finds it is perfume-y, with patchouli. I reckon it is full-on Christmas cake, yet flowery at the same time. Black bun, sultanas, and dark pastry (whatever that is), the crust of a cake baked for too long. Golden syrup (JS). It does becomes perfume-y indeed. A bottle of perfume next to a stack of fluffy pancakes (JS), a soap bar. Mouth: spicy cake again, with lots of cinnamon, cassia bark and squashed sultanas. Finish: more of the same -- cake sultanas, dried figs, with a pinch of spices. Chocolate emerges, including a slight bitterness. 8/10

95.20 18yo d.1997 Glazed cocktail sausages (53.2%, SMWS Society Single Cask, 2nd Ffill ex-Sherry Butt, 252b): nose: crisp flowers (forsithia) and an alcohol level that is rather pungent. Mouth: hot custard, sprinkled with cinnamon. It is fairly hot, whilst remaining amazingly soft and silky. Creamy vanilla pudding. Finish: delicate and velvety, with juicy apricot compote. Astonishingly, the heat almost disappeared in the finish. 8/10

We go off-piste and try more ancient expressions.

72.30 30yo 1983/2013 Fruit, fruit, fruit! (49.9%, SMWS Still one of a kind, Refill ex-Bourbon Hogshead, 221b): nose: melon, peach and ivy. We had this one when it came out and I remember not being totally convinced. It seems much, much more immediate, today. Mouth: mellow with yellow-flesh fruit (apricot, peach). This is very, very velvety indeed. Finish: more of the same fruits, with a touch of chocolate thrown in for good measure. Love this. 8/10

41.69 12yo 2013/2015 Making your mind twitch (57.6%, SMWS Society Single Cask, 2nd Fill ex-Bourbon Barrel, 42b): nose: deeply flowery, with also bakery notes. Mouth: good power, a nice mix of flowers and bakery. Finish: oomph! It opens up to reveal tropical fruits aplenty. This is very much to my liking. 8/10

G3.4 27yo d.1984 Pride of Bengal (57.5%, SMWS Society Single Cask, Refill ex-Bourbon Hogshead, 219b): T tries it first, "Once you swallow it, there's a really interesting taste left in your mouth." JH: "That's what she said." Hem. Nose: tinned pineapple. Must have been a faulty tin, because the metallic taste is very prominent. Metal, verbena, sage. Mouth: warm. Finish: full-on verbena and tin cans. It is good and interesting, yet probably not my favourite expression from this closed distillery. 8/10

Good times.

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