Nose : Springbankish, here is a good news. We immediately have something dusty while the profile is pretty austere. Cold stone, salt crystals and lemon juice melt with a smoke that unites ash, bacon and chemistry (polish, wax). It is a dram that instantly works; no futile set up and a pretty quick release. So we move on to shells (mussels), seaweeds, apricots with vanilla cream or even wet dog. Mandarins come later with fresh notes (peppered mint) whereas we lean more toward dessert : Breton shortbread biscuits, apricot pie, lemon pie, pineapple in juice. The salt takes broadness as the smoke seems to normalized. Gourmet and sharp; a combo that hit the bull’s eye. Those reluctant to Campbeltown’s austerity can swallow their pessimism with this old-style malt. Water condensed the whole and erases this bi-phase aspect (dessert, austerity).
Mouth : The texture is soft and the amplitude very satisfying. The fat doesn’t especially relay the dessert aspect this time. We do have a bit of honey, acid fruits (grapefruit, lemon, pineapple), dry fruits (almonds, hazelnuts) but it is in fact the minerals and the narghile coal smoke (associated with polish) which are on the level. However, this last one is less marked than before. We have a beautiful balance even if the second part is more specific. We go on lemon medicine, lemon sparkling water, a hint of rubber but also more natural touches (candied lemon, hazelnuts). Water now reinforces contrasts. We begin with a lot of roundness (more honey) before the citrus fruits and the dry fruits (more hazelnut) arrive. The second part keeps well the sugar but goes on lemon essential oil, minerals, oyster shells and smoke (less present in the whole). It is a bit less refined with the water even if it makes it dangerously drinkable.
Finish : Long with a nice persistence. We find again this medicinal lemony aspect with apricot and still this narguile-polish smoke. The aftertaste is fresher with peppered mint on top. In the end, it is the smoke that endures with an ashy aspect (associated with paraffin) taking the upper hand on the chemical aspect.