4.230 - Sweet and salty, smoke and ash

12 years old, distilled 31st May 2004, 65.2% abv, Refill Ex-Sherry Puncheon, 588 bottles, dram price C

SMWS 4.230 - Sweet and salty, smoke and ashThe nose has honey, golden syrup, barbecue wood chips, and a hint of sea air. The mouthfeel is decent with no cling. The body has an immediate big smoke hit - bonfire smoke, ash, and then it moves to honey, caramel, smokey bacon crisps and liquorice. The finish is bonfire smoke and ash.

Water brings out thin, rapidly expanding whorling that dissipates quickly. The nose now gains caramel and ash, and loses the sea air. The body gains butterscotch and more ash, but loses a little honey, but is still remarkably balanced. The finish gains charred wood.

A stunning dram - the second peatiest Highland Park I've ever had, yet still elegantly balanced and brilliantly composed.