Oh, yes, the wood is making something happen here! Something really nice indeed. It’s so dark in the glass that it bends the dim, dust-flecked light in the Malt Impostor tasting room. It’s a super massive black hole that slurps my olfactory capacity into swirling singularity.
But I shall, like Matthew McConaughey in Interstellar, pilot my spaceship so that I can make this report. Bill and Stephen start making cracks about how long it has taken me to write this up that it’s like the point in the film where McConaughey comes back to find that Romilly has aged 23 years during the handful of hours that he was away. I ignore them. The nose features an assortment of delights, perhaps too many to catalogue. But standing out from the throng are mummified lemons kept in the jowl of a large rodent, the heartstring of a Stradivarius, and granite obelisk rising out of the desert. As I close my eyes so that my nostrils can work through the sensations, I feel like I’m looking into a star opal and seeing the Hundred Acre Woods and—look!—there’s Pooh and he’s running around with Roo and they are all so real!
The mouth is stupendous. I shall call it what it is, a liquified depth charge of hedonism. Imagine if you took God’s own earwax and churned to butter, and then stretched out into taffy. Or consider sous vide bacon prepared so slowly that it both cooks and cures at the same time. “We will make no wine before it’s time,” a generation of wine drinkers grew up hearing, and they saw how procrastination could be turned into an art. But here procrastination has become a sacrament.
The finish is long. It’s like thick bridle leather you can’t punch an awl through. There’s no change from the mouth insofar as it keeps its full intensity throughout. My tongue is so confused, it thinks I’m still drinking. My throat spasms in the belief that I ought to be swallowing and I make that funny clicking sound that’s more of a clucking and I get so self-conscious that I say, “hey, I’m getting some nice pepper here” and Bill and Stephen are no longer looking funny at me anymore. Whew! Yes, there’s pepper on the finish and it is so so drinkable. It just gets better and better and better. I could walk a long way on a cold night after drinking this. (Bill interrupts to say that he’d stay indoors to finish the bottle while I was out. Readers, should know that he would do precisely that. You could trust him with your money; your most awful secrets he’ll never tell; and he’d vouchsafe your reputation even at cost to his own. But for all of these virtues, this bottle would be rinsed out and bone dry in the time it takes me to return from the mailbox at the end of my driveway.)
–Our thanks to Gordon & MacPhail for the sample!