Dram Review: Kavalan Solist Amontillado

[55.6%・NAS・Bottled Circa. 2015-2016・Official Bottling・Single Cask Release]

Congratulations to Kavalan for yet another successful year at the World Whiskies Awards. I had the fortune to taste a sample of this along with the Moscatel and the Manzanilla casks, and whilst all are delicious, I have to say this one was by far the most complex though I couldn’t really decide if I love the specific flavours or not, such is the fascination with whiskies, ultimately preferences can be quite personal and objective..

Nose:

Initially, it’s slightly dusty but immensely oaky on the nose, in a good way. The sweet floral musk and the aromatic essence of bright red cherries guide it from being over-oaked. Traces of prunes and lemon peels along with peppercorns and cloves on the back end. To a lesser extent, there is a vanilla grain note faintly noticeable in the background.

Palate & Finish:

On the palate, this dram gives the people what they want, brown sugar with a whole lot of spices and woody notes to show in the first place; then comes the sublime delivery of seasoned fruits that just oozes out. The brightness of fruits then takes a slight detour to reveal notes of milk powder and black tea, before the sultry sweetness comes back in a jam like texture, bringing about dark chocolate and tannins.

The sherry fruits slowly subside to unfold brushes of vanilla grain over a slight bitter note of black tea, with just a touch of mint to conclude.

Thoughts:

A sophisticated dram amongst offerings that are mostly bold and indulging, it invites you to look deeper into its soul, a contemplative dram.

☆ [Recommended]

-Nicholas