16 Year Old – Completly LegalJune 3, 2015
Sour grapes & Tragic ends- Bowmore Black RockNovember 26, 2017
The wizard is getting better at his wizardry!
While most of my favourites malt whiskies have been ones with light colour profiles, I have to acknowledge that when you see a dark whisky smiling from the glass/bottle it does make lips smack in anticipation. More so perhaps due to the fact of knowing what the contents are; what I have here is a sequel (Spectrum 004) to the rather illustrious predecessor ‘Amrut Spectrum 005’!
That was one dram which was very difficult to classify. If you have had a sample of the whisky you will relate to what I am saying. It had something to offer for different palate preferences. What was particularly good was the sync with the name ‘spectrum’. The nectar was primarily matured in ex bourbon casks and then transferred to a custom barrel built with different woods. It was a rather special dram and if you have not had one, it’s getting tougher to procure by the minute. Last I heard was 500€ for a bottle (1000 were released)
So when it comes to sequels I am a pessimist as more often than not; with the odds stacked against this lovely looking whisky, let us trudge on.
Colour: This is a shade darker than Twany but not as dark as Mahogany. Goes without saying makes you expect a sherry bomb.
Nose: This one feels like being constrained, damp wood soaked in sugar, almost reluctant to come to the nose. Let it lie for 20 seconds and now the sweet fragrance wafts through, ripe raisins and with cinnamon in the backdrop. The nose reminded me of some homemade ginger wine with dollops of sherry. Surely this will open up more with time and maybe a bit of water.
Mouth: The inexperienced palate that I have this one took more than 4 sips for me to get a grip of things happening (increasingly larger quantities every sip). This is again a rather deceitful dram with backdrops coming to the fore and performing disappearing acts, quite like the antecedent. The initial reflex is for me to put it down as a version of ‘engineered Fusion’, but wait maybe it’s a mix of Fusion and Peated? No they have added the more of the sherry, as you can see it’s all very confusing. (The only consistent thing happening is me taking more of it in) It is rich with some spice and bite in a good way.
Finish: It is thicker on the palate but not to the extent of oily, just a bit more to give the tongue a nice coat and hang in there for a longer time. Long finish and just felt a hint of cloves like the hiss of the snake before disappearing.
With a drop of water: Boom! The wick was lit and the wound up scents exploded. A vibrant nose now, more pronounced. It remains dominated by sweets and ripe fruits, over ripe bananas. The water has made it lighter and a tinge of extra sherry shows up. The slight tinge of peat can’t be traced now.
When putting down the notes I did not know the ABV and if it is anything above 46% the wizards have again done a wonderful job. One can keep taking sips of this ambrosia and try to nail down the exact taste profiles but for amateurs like me it would just result in a rather lengthy page of trying!
A generous sample, thanks Ashok