Posted 25 September 2019
The press release describes the refill ex-bourbon barrel used to mature this 23 year old Imperial as ‘inactive’ - which is likely doing it something of a disservice, at least in terms of those with fixed perceptions. There’s a lot of contention around both the ideal level of activity a cask should possess and the number of refills it's used for – one person’s knackered old cask is another’s sympathetic mellowing vessel. To my mind the dividing line is often not as cut and dry as is sometimes suggested, and can greatly depend on the personal taste of the imbiber. Regardless, all other things being equal, a long maturation in a less active refill cask should allow the inherent character of the spirit itself more room to shine – and if the overall balance is right, then you should be onto a real winner.