American White Oak, Madeira Hogshead Finish for 8 Months (#107660/2006, 420 btl.)
The nose starts off with lots of nougat, toffee and red fruit - raspberries in particular. This is accompanied by vanilla and a hint of fresh lemon, followed by slightly bitter notes of unripe peaches and a whiff of oak in the background.
Deliciously sweet and creamy, almost silky on the palate. Fruity notes of peaches and grapes emerge, nicely mixed with vanilla and honey, before a warming spiciness of oak and black pepper takes over. Lingering dark chocolate and walnut notes are leading to a warm finish.
The finish is medium-long and slightly sweet with honey and malted barley. Dry cocoa and warm oak spice on the tail.
There's even more fruit coming through on the nose when a few drops of water are added. Fresh with lots of peaches, rasberries and more floral notes. Subtle sweet and silky on the palate with a pleasant mix of grapes, raspberries, vanilla and honey. Water tames the warmth while the spiciness of oak and white pepper is still present. The finish shows medium length with tender sweet malt and honey, turning into a dry end with cocoa, oak and grape peel.
I thank Arne Wesche from whic (Whiskycircle) for the sample and the photograph!