It looks at me. I look at it. I tasted it on Islay in a warehouse at the Laphroaig Distillery. I drew this precious water of life out of a ex-Manzanilla cask. I brought it back with me to Nacka. Now it’s time to have a taste once again.
Look at it. I do think it’s good. A dark-auburn resin glistening in glass. Aged in an ex-bourbon cask for ten years and then eight years in an ex-Manzanilla cask. Delivered to my bottle and glass at cask-strength, 56.1% ABV. Oh yes, on the first pour there’s a strong hit of alcohol as more specific notes emerge–raisin, fruitcake, dark rum, stewed vegetables, nutmeg, turmeric, orange and banana, milk chocolate and caramel.
In the mouth? Cayenne and honey, white pepper, orange liqueur and BBQ sauce, stewed tomatoes, custard, chocolate milk, red hots, sweet and sour in a red and white carton box and on into a finish of melon and mint. With a touch of water, the nose opens with more citrus and added notes of bacon and molasses. Over my tongue, there’s more of a syrupy texture with added peppermint, and certainly greater space between all the previous tasting notes–a more distinctive experience. And, of course, through all there is smoke. I like it.
Weeks later–air and time have brought out more brown sugar and banana bread. A Ragù sauce with a hint of cinnamon, ginger and marmalade. Over the next days, a stronger dark roux presence develops with caramel covered apple and butterscotch. I think about it and it thinks about me.
Months later. Raisins and brown bread mix with more ginger and a habanero-orange jelly on the nose. Mixing with my saliva now, cherries burst in a dark chocolate sauce that slowly tips into a tangy BBQ sauce. Yes, I would drink this with ribs. Yes, no matter how I break it down, the experience remains consistent. I wish you were here to drink it with me. And now, to finish the tasting, how about some King Crimson “Indiscipline” early 1980s. Sláinte!