9 years in ex-bourbon and an additional maturation in a 2nd fill PX hogshead for this AnCnoc.
Nose: Bizarre. Paprika, mace and cumin alongside green peppers, chocolate sauce and peanut brittle. Sesame seeds are joined by water crackers and Szechuan pepper. Think homemade curry with some stuff thrown in which really shouldn’t be there. Water lowers the perversity, focussing on savoury aromas – fermenting ale, rising dough and yeasty rolls.
Taste: A big chilli hit erupts on the palate – cayenne and red chilli alongside smoked paprika. Then we’re into pickled onion Monster Munch, spring onions, BBQ’d meats with an inexplicable side order of dried berry fruit cake, dark chocolate and gingerbread. Still weirder than weird. Dilution goes for cashew and hazelnuts alongside a rich chocolate sauce, dried earthy and piquant green peppers.
Finish: Long, packed full of pepperiness, char and big oak tannins.
Well where to start with this anomalous AnCnoc?! It’s undeniably fun, and if you’re looking for a demonstration of just how out-there whisky can be, this will tick those boxes and then some. But, in terms of the composition and actual enjoyment - a hot mess. Whisky for masochists.