Strathmill 24y 1990 Strohwein Finish by C&S

Tasting: Strathmill 24y 1990 Strohwein Finish by C&S

Strathmill 24y 1990 Strohwein Finish by C&SDram data:
Distillery: Strathmill
Bottler: C&S
Distilled: 04.05.1990
Bottled: 08.09.2014
Age: 24 years
Limitation: 282 bottles
Casks: Nr. 2251 (Ex-Sherry with Stohwein Finish)
Alcohol: 54,8%
unchillfiltered; natural colour
Whiskybase link

Tasting notes:
Colour:
light gold
The nose opens very “green” and herbal. Fresh garden herbs, fermented tea, beeswax, propolis, eucalyptus, wormwood. As time progresses notes of vanilla, malt and pear start to appear, but they don’t make it a  fruity or sweet nose, it stays herbal. A touch of water mellows it down and the herbal note now reminds me of cough lozenges and liquorice – including a touch more sweetness. The palate is quite nippy and zingy for 44,5% ABV with malt sweetness in the foreground. (correction: The sample bottle was labelled incorrectly, it has 54,8% ABV!) Time to add some water: Still a very pronounced sweetness – Liquorice, cough lozenges, herbal tea with lots of rock candy, sage, oak spices. This baby is 90% cask-driven. The medium long finish starts out quite punchy upon swallowing, mellowing down to a sweet and herbal mixture with a distinctive oak note appearing as the sweetness fades away.

Verdict:
The pronounced herbal and “green” character is not something you encounter every day, hard to imagine a distillery putting this put as an official bottling. I had no idea of what had been done to this dram upon tasting, looking it up now afterwards I see it has been finished in “Strohwein” (very sweet straw wine) casks. I can see how this incorporated the intense sweetness I noticed on the palate and in the finish – and quite some herbal cask notes too. Completely gone is the character of the initial ex-sherry wood maturation.

Score: 83/100
(Nose: 85 Palate: 83 Finish: 83)

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