Whiskies aged in first-fill Sherry butts are especially so, and those drawn entirely from such sherried stock are invariably known as “sherry bombs” for the potent flavors the malt whisky has derived from its time spent mingling with the sherry-soaked wood. The ‘Sherried’ character, therefore, is down to the Sherry itself, but also oxidation and the way in which the Sherry has interacted with and changed compounds in the oak. All of these then interact over time with the maturing spirit.

The Sherry and wood form a pincer movement that stamps out distillery character or any sense of identity in the distillate itself. For me, a great Sherry-matured malt should possess a balance between distillery identity, fruitiness, earthiness and a lick of spice. Sherry bombs almost always eschew this tightrope balance in favour of heat, density and aggression of wood flavor.

Classic Dalmore/sherry cask notes of raisin, ripe plum, chocolate, honey, pear, orange peel touch of caramel (once opened up the caramel becomes a maple syrup) slight highland floral hiding in back you have to search it out.

 Very smooth, rich and well rounded; the epitome of The Dalmore house style. This delicate and approachable vintage is initially matured for 12 years in American white oak ex-bourbon casks, then split equally between three different sherry woods – Amoroso, Apostoles and Matusalem oloroso – for a further three years. The character and complexity of The Dalmore 15 are acquired during this unique cask journey. The spirit is finally reunited in an sherry butt, allowing the flavors to marry.

ABV: 40 %. Color: Copper and deep amber, strong legs.

On the nose: sherry indeed; butterscotch, caramel and orange marmalade. Lush and raisiny. Chocolate orange, orange syrup, leather, mature Sherry, and subtle cinnamon. and nutmeg, art cherry, spent coffee grounds, wax paper. The round edges, the sherry factor and the oak notes are high in this whisky. The grain note is a slight bit dark and musty so the whisky is very malty.

In the mouth: now, that balance is utterly incredible. It’s very silky, practically slipping all over your tongue like jelly and ice cream – yet it isn’t at all oily, or even that thick. It’s got a wonderful weight. Sultanas, dates perhaps, gentle warming winter spices, a very distant earthy, vegetative note. Sweet initially and quite rapidly tart. Slightly thin mouthfeel. Unripened grapes, oak, chocolate orange candy, bitter orange rind, coal dust, cola. Subtle burn. Very quick. Mandarin, vanilla, ginger and crushed apples.

Quite dry and almost sharp finish. Christmas spice and oak.

Balance, Body & Feel
A soft and powerful dram. It has a lot of flavors perfectly balanced, between sherry, caramel and spice.   Lingering bitter notes of citrus zest and tonic water.