By the Cromarty Firth, the distillery overlooks the Black Isle at Alness in Ross-shire and takes its water from the Alness River, to which it has sole rights. An amber fluid which, having been in the cask for 29 years, cries out for freedom. Released, it rewards its liberator's expectations: lightly sweet and woody. With water, the woodiness disappears and there are raisins, linoleum and linseed. The taste is of vanilla and tannin and the finish is long, dry and savoury.