Appearance: Light, golden amber. Good beading.
Nose: Opens cautious and soft, with waxy honeycomb offset by fresh, gently tart fruit notes, but soon reveals an aromatic complexity beyond its age. Sweet wood-shavings. The trademark Dalwhinnie honeycomb is the keynote, with heather and natural moorland scents, then traces of cream soda. Later, a nutty dryness coats rich, textured Italian chocolate ice-cream. Water raises warm candlewax; the effect is of a gentle waft of sugared patisserie-fresh glazed fruit pastries, with top-notes of honeysuckle, and the nose-feel is now more peppery.
Palate: Best straight, when it is smooth, sweet, distinctly waxy and initially cooling (again, honeycomb), with a rich marriage of oily malt and light, drying winey notes. Later, elegant vanilla-laced tannins give balancing hints of spice. With water (just a drop) the texture remains smooth and ‘teeth-coating’; the sweetness is still apparent. Finally dry and herbal (grassy freshness) with a hint of cleansing resin
Finish: Rounded and medium to long. Warming, with a distinct rich, oaky spiciness in the aftertaste. With water, softer, shorter and less obviously spicy, the resin now transformed into late clove.