A 1991 refill ex-bourbon barrel and a 1994 refill ex-bourbon hogshead have been combined together to form Edition 46 from Whisky Sponge. Bottled at 52.1% and with 334 bottles produced all adorned with a Pattersponge octopus. Still available via Decadent Drinks for £350 (with a 20% discount on that available as of writing).
Nose: Lamp oil and paraffin wax are given a fruity kick from apricot, peach and lemon. Time in the glasses broadens things further with guava and passionfruit. Minerality and herbalness remind me of gose beer with salt and coriander developing alongside granite, shale and woollen jumpers. Dilution expresses reduced orchard fruits and clean cotton alongside pollen and pink wafer biscuits.
Taste: Bright and concentrated. Tart lime, gooseberry and pineapple chunks meet a greenhouse venousness with stems, tree sap, cut grass and slapped mint. Toffee cups join chalk, salt and hewn rock whilst wool and animal hides provide a barny development. The addition of water here results in pretty glorious results – a progressive fruity slide from sweet to sour into tart and supported by wisps of cask-led pepper. A real journey. And wonderfully poised.
Finish: Medium with angelica, gooseberry, mint and lemon merging on well-judged dryness.
Another captivating well-aged IB Jura which once again shows how far away the spirit can get from how it’s presently bottled by the distillery itself. There’s exceptional definition throughout and intricacies every step of the way. And to top it off, despite 27 year of sitting in wood, the cask here has been kept well in check. Pricey stuff (as all older IB Jura has steadily become) – but if you’re looking to cash in the 20% spring Decadent Drinks discount on something really exceptional you could do far worse than this.