Nose: A touch reserved at first but soon blooming into a rather lovely, clean sherry; macerated cherries, sultana and pink grapefruit are fused with cigar leaf, walnut oil and light, fresh leather. Lovely.
Taste: Quite peppery on entry again with ginger (dried and candied) with a little crushed fennel seed and light coffee. A nice integration of jammy fruit and slight dusty old leather develops through the length.
Finish: Long, measured and mellow. Classic old sherry.
Thoughts: A great surprise, one of the highlights of the evening for many and with good reason. This is classic, clean sherry maturation with a beautifully measured balance of fruit, oak and leathery spice.
Appearance: Rich amber gold. Good beading and texture.
Nose: Light and precise, soon growing in depth and complexity. Top notes of fresh, crisp, juicy fruit (orange peel, banana, pear skin, even fruit chews) are backed by fragrant almond oil and rich malt. Later, leather, beeswax and a suggestion of smoke. Water increases the scented oil and brings up fruit salad with vanilla custard (red berries, tinned pears). Some late charred oak and smoke.
Body: Medium, oily. Richer with water.
Palate: Initially cool, smooth and sweet, with fresh acidity and a mouth-filling texture, then warming, with smoky charred fruit, as in a burnt fruit-cake. With a little water, less voluptuous though still cooling and coating; it’s not so sweet now as the perfume grows and there’s an attractive dry nuttiness developing into dark chocolate, with hints of menthol and a grating of orange zest. Still smooth, fresh and well balanced, with a pleasing chewy texture
Finish: Sustained and warming, with liquorice toffee and peppermint cordial, then bitter chocolate. Waxy too, with notes of pistachio and pecan nut. Unctuous to the last, with late beeswax and final notes of eucalyptus and clove.