Yum! Nose has an interesting subtle smokeyness, kinda weird, dank, sweet tobacco, hint of snakes fireworks (remember those things?), with a restrained madeira-sherry cross, kinda perverse in a very likeable way.
Palate -- this is Ardbeg? Deep but gentle flavors of black tea, dark red cherries (not sweet cherries), tobacco and herbal notes. Some coffee and Indian spices. The sherry character here is more muted and melded than I expected, along with bual madeira. I wouldn't call it anything close to a sherry bomb, although you might expect it from the color and reading the label.
Finish is long, vague cinnamon and nutmeg. Smoke is most apparent here, noticeable though restrained.
Rather mellow altogether, yet with delicious complex flavors, a beautiful yet somewhat feisty sipper. The more I drink of this, the more it opens up and reveals new aspects. Definitely ranks among my all-time favorites. I am so, so happy I have a whole bottle of this. It won't last long, unfortunately!
N: Gunpowder, dates, dark fruits, BBQ ribs with a Cajun rub, green herbs, mint. P: Chewy spicy sherry, then comes the peat with lots of tang, some maybe coming from a bit of sulfur (Talisker 1981-esque). Lots of fruit too. Super complex. F: Brush your teeth type of stuff, very lingering, some clove / weed in the finish. Wow. [Note: I admired this bottle from afar (not in a pervy way....well, ok maybe a bit pervy) and expectations were high. But this is really unusual and fantastic stuff, and I don't think that factored in too much.]