7 years old, distilled 11th March 2011, 64.6% abv, Refill Ex-Bourbon Barrel, 236 bottles, dram price C
The nose has driftwood bonfires, vanilla and a little hint of both heather and tar. The mouthfeel is thin with no cling. The body has vanilla, heather, a little lavender and then tar and then that bonfire smoke. The finish has bonfire smoke with a little vanilla.
Water brings out thin, compact whorling that settles into brief mottling. The nose gains more vanilla and tar, and almost loses the heather. The body gains more lavender and vanilla, but loses nothing. The finish gains tar and more vanilla, and a hint of lavender - but the smoke is the real winner, bigger and longer lasting than before.
This is why people like Islay whiskies.
One for winter evenings.
Technical score: 4.5/5
Personal preference: I'd like a bottle.
This whisky was provided by the SMWS in a preview session - thanks to them for that. Full editorial control has been retained in the tasting process!