Over to Strathisla for a 13 year old that has been maturing in a 1st fill ex-bourbon barrel since 2007.
Nose: Eaton mess joins the inside of a sweet shop – strawberry laces, foam mushrooms and pink shrimps. Alongside, lemon bonbons and orange gel are given a sense of stylishness with pressed cotton sheets, cream custard and freshly picked buttercups and sunflowers. The addition of water offers lemon sherbet alongside condensed milk, toffee cups and lamp oil.
Taste: Perfectly weighted. Strawberries and cranberries are macerated in simple syrup and with the slightest drop of balsamic, whilst a bowl of milky cereals is served alongside clotted cream, lemon meringue pie and balled melon topped with a mint sprig. Reduction favours the ex-bourbon barrel – vanilla imbued-cream and selection on oils and balms adding noticeable texture.
Finish: Medium to long with fading lemon-tinged fruits, pastilles and wispy barrel char.
What appears to be a rather unassuming teenage Strathisla is in fact something of a cracker. There’s poise, balance and brightness throughout, making for an ideal hot summer’s day dram. Recommended.