Dufftown was bottled fairly infrequently by the Society until last year – since then we’ve had five new bottlings – all just a shy under 10 years of age. This example has spent its life in a 2nd fill ex-bourbon barrel.
Nose: A highly floral opening of rosehips, pine needles, lavender and potpourri. Lemon peels, jelly sweets and well-dusted Turkish delight provide additional sweetness whilst rolled pastry is joined by a sense of alluvialness in the background – wet soils and waterlogged clays. Dilution adds some spice with stem ginger alongside overt grassiness.
Taste: Tart fruits (grapefruit and lime) arrive on the palate and are softened by balled Galia melon. Crème patisserie and biscuit crumb are joined by Bird’s Custard and whipped cream, whilst ginger cake and charred staves bring forward some of the cask influence – drying, and somewhat dusty. Water favours the oak – custard, vanilla and emerging tannins.
Finish: Medium in length with biscuits and pepperiness joined by drying and somewhat tannic oak that sticks around the gums.
This Dufftown possesses a rather different palate than the nose suggests. And alas, I rather prefer the former. Whilst both possess a pleasant combination of fruits, I found the floralness of the nose far more successful than the wood-forward, rather drying palate.