"An improvement from the 12-year-old version and appropiate for anyone beginning with the peat-sherry combinations"
(Photo from Whiskybase)
The Darkest is partially matured in Oloroso sherry casks. In 2007, it received an age statements (Hooray!!) of 15 years. The sherry is supposed to be more influential compared to the 12 years. For comparison, I recall that I liked this one the most 10 years ago, for it tasted less of liquified wood and got a nice balance. Same label design, still love it. It is darker indeed, not the darkest though (there are expressions such as the Black Bowmore).
Fruitier compared to the 12 year-old and clearly more sherry influence. Sweetish, spicy vanilla, some nutmeg, sweet pepper, salty. Smoke is coming through, but gently. Followed by fudge, lots of honey, heather honey. The woods notes are subdued by the sherry. A nice rounded nose.
First, coal, smoke and salt. The peat is definitely on the forefoot in the palate. Bit tangy, but that is just kept in balance by the fruity sweetness of the sherry. Cinnamon powder, freshly sawn wood, and forest fruits like blue berries, black currants and raspberries.
My first thought is that I like this much more than the 12 years. Balance is better, wood influence is in check, and finish is nicely rounded. No strangeness on the palate either. An improvement, definitely.
A sample of this was purchased from !
• these are my personal views, so do not take them too seriously… nothing beats tasting these for yourself •