Longmorn 1996 17 year old cask #72322 (Signatory)

Bottle: Standard issue un-chillfiltered collection. Nondescript with a plain white label.

Nose: Subtler than I would have expected. The sherry aromas are relatively mild, some cherry, a little coffee and salt crusted lemon. An understated beginning compared to the usual panache I get from this distillery.

Body: Silky and light.

Palate: The sherry announces itself here. Burnt toffee, woody, warm and spicy. Quite dry. It’s very well balanced and very smooth at 46%. It also has a rather nice effervescence to it. A little grainy mineral texture in the mouth that makes it almost fizz on sipping.

Finish: Dark chocolate orange, cocoa powder, white pepper and clove. Not particularly long but certainly well constructed.

Neat/Ice/Water: Not even going there. Don’t care. Neat all the way at 46%

Verdict: Superior. I picked this up at auction a few months back and have been trying to resist opening it since. I adore Longmorn, generally speaking, but hadn’t yet tried a single cask sherry finish. The colour is verging on polished mahogany, that backs up the label as far as being matured in a 1st fill sherry butt. The nose is a little anonymous but the mouth and the finish are very good. This is a very elegant dram that quietly delivers without too much fuss. I would easily buy this again but probably won’t have the chance as there are only 748 of them around (747 actually…) Good gear. Not a sherry monster like some other 100% sherry maturations I’ve had but that’s not necessarily a bad thing. This dram achieves harmony between the wood and the spirit in a way that doesn’t allow one to dominate the other.

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