Clynelish 1995 25 year old Edition 40
Posted 21 January 2022 by Matt / In Clynelish
Bottle Name: Clynelish 1995 Edition 40
Bottler: Whisky Sponge
Glass Weight: 489g
Phase 3 and the darkest of Sponge’s Decent series – there’s clearly far more activity from this refill sherry butt than the other two. 528 bottles at 56.6% is the net result.
Nose: Salt peter and mushrooms (interesting combination) sit with chocolate, balsamic and fermenting oranges and lemons. A pot of freshly brewed coffee joins damp mosses and ferns whilst palpable sherry delivers black and red currants and rancio. Reduction presents walnut whips and almond butter together with creamy brulee.
Taste: Sherry. All of it. Resinous oak with a large berry fruit component – preserves, jams and spreads – alongside plum pudding, dark chocolate, tanned leather and musty cellars. There’s still defined texture throughout with wax and oiliness – but it comes with cloves and pepper and spiced figs in large quantities so it’s harder to discern the spirit from the cask. Dilution reveals baked apples and polished lemons together with zesty orange and a far more subdued sherry overlay. Far more my speed now.
Finish: Long oak-forward and fairly drying with persistent wood spice.
There’s lots to like about Whisky Sponge Edition 40 – particularly if you’re a sherry head. However, for my palate, this is over-extracted and loses rather a lot of the qualities of the underlying distillate under the weight of the cask activity. Nevertheless, reduced down to below 50% ABV there was certainly a point where I could find a far better equilibrium which revelled ample fruit character and a lovely creaminess. Scored for my tastes (as always). Sherry lovers will no doubt go higher.
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