Dalmore Dominium sits at the top of the distillery’s Fortuna Meritas Collection. It is comprised of white that’s been matured in American white oak and finished in Matusalem sherry casks. What’s a matusalem you ask? It’s a sherry cask that’s been enriched (read sweetened) with 25% Pedro Ximenez. It’s a VORS sherry meaning that the casks used must be at least 30 years or older. The expression is bottled at a ABV of 43% as opposed to the other Fortuna Meritas Collection entries which all come in at 40%. It’s delivered in a standard 70cl bottle and is available from Master of Malt for £97.36 as of writing.
Nose: A basket of dried fruits – prunes, dates, figs, sultanas and currants. This is wild hedgerow berries and fresh cherries. There’s some light char discernible, intermixed with fresh golden tobacco, heathery honey and almonds. Welcoming.
Taste: Quite unctuous. Berries, dried fruits and currants are now supported by sweetshop flavours of boiled sweets. Fruitiness leads, but depth follows with chocolate, freshly brewed coffee and a hint of liquorice. Cinnamon and nutmeg give some well-judged spicing alongside a hint of chilli.
Finish: Medium, fruity and with pleasant tannins and pepper.
Dalmore Dominium offers a truly likeable, and worryingly drinkable whisky that manages to be both rich and sweet, but balanced and elegant at the same time. Pronounced and interesting aroma and flavour is harmonised with spot-on cask influence that provides depth and character whilst still feeling very much part of what the modern-day Dalmore DNA is about. At a shy under £100 it’s a bottle that doesn’t come cheaply, but at the same time offers a lovely drinking experience. The best of the Fortuna Meritas Collection to my taste and highly recommended.