Nose – Lemon, sharp citric notes, lemon drizzle
Palate – Lemon, watermelon, apples, slight spice
Nose with water – Lemon, highly varnished wood, vanilla icing
Palate with water – Vanilla ice cream with lemon sauce, sweet and sour sauce, hint of spice
If the younger Ben Nevis cask promises cherry pie, this elder cask is an absolute lemon drizzle cake. The nose without water gives sharp citric notes, along with fragrant vanilla and sweetness. The palate offers more complex fruitiness by the way of watermelon and apples to temper the lemon, and a hint of spice.
The nose with water softens the lemon and brings out vanilla icing and the scent of highly varnished wood. With water, the palate is more vanilla ice cream with lemon sauce topping, more spice here, and probing deeper, sweet and sour sauce. The length of time this cask needs before bottling is likely to be a matter of taste. We think it’s wonderful now, with the citric notes bringing a unique and lively character to the whisky. However, those seeking a more indulgent option may choose to give the whisky a little more time to soften out those top notes.