The nose balances gentle peat notes with fresh fruit — peaches, some lemon, and an indistinct floral character. Fans of peated blended Scotch will find this similar, though heavier on the smoke than, say, Johnnie Walker Black Label. The formula is reversed on the palate, where a fruity sweetness is more in command, again peaches, apricot, and a bit of citrus. That light campfire smokiness attempts to muscle its way in, but a different style of sugar takes over in short order. Here a marshmallow/spun sugar element kicks up the sugar quotient quite a bit, with a healthy punch of sesame oil, fresh cereal grains, and nougat all in a slurry. The finish sees that enduring sweetness continuing on, touched with lightly smoked grains and a touch of tobacco, culminating with a note of chimney soot and a hint of cherry fruit that isn’t really visible before this conclusion.
This little kick on the finish elevates — just so — what is otherwise a straightforward experience, making for a refreshing and solid, though not entirely dazzling, little whiskey. On the whole, however: Way to go, Malaysia.
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