Let’s see if this brand new Springbank is anywhere near the excellent Longrow 18 from last year. It was matured in 80% sherry, the rest being bourbon.
Colour: full gold.
Nose: what strikes me first is the youthfulness here, as it starts all on notes of blueberry yoghurt and fresh ripe strawberries as well as hints of gamay (Beaujolais nouveau) and muesli. It’s a rather big smokiness that enters the dance after that, with whiffs of lapsang souchong tea, espresso coffee and brown coal (stove) as well as a little putty, fresh walnuts, soaked grains and candle wax. The fresh fruits/’wet’ smoke combination works very well in our view. Oh, and Barbour grease… Extremely well composed.
Mouth: assertive and a little rougher than on the nose, maybe a tad less ‘forthright’. Rather oily mouth feel. The sherry is a little more obvious too (redcurrants, cassis buds)… Bubblegum, liquorice allsorts, raspberry jam… Also oranges, and once again a rather obvious smokiness. Hints of chilli (spicy pizza sauce). A tad roguish, pleasantly so.
Finish: long and in the keeping with the palate. Notes of bitter tea but also strawberry sweets and a hotness.
Comments: a magnificent nose, rather old skool, and a full-bodied palate that’s more than just very good. The spirit talks. SGP:653 - 90 points.