Nose: Quite restrained a first but slowly evolves into soft golden fruit, oak, vanilla and a whiff of gentle smoke. After a few minutes, the aroma of white grapes and After Eight mint chocolates come to the fore. A teaspoon of water brings with it hints of coconut and the chocolate note is ramped up considerably.
Palate: Oily with an initial dollop of honey. This then gives way to apples, vanilla and a sprinkling of chilli flakes. Water increases the fruitiness of the whisky, with warming spices and black pepper joining a blackcurrant and damson jam taste. Despite the 60.4% volume, this is smooth and enjoyable neat.
Finish: A medium length, with oaky vanilla, slight pepper and crumbly Edinburgh rock. There's also a faint hint of green olives there, too, making for an interesting drop.
Notes: The S41 was blended here in Glasgow, is 12 years old, was bottled on June 12, 2013 and is bottle 111/200. The finish is a mixture of Spanish oak and sherry cask and came from cask 588. This sample was very kindly given to me by work colleague and fellow whisky nut Sean Guthrie (follow him on Twitter @guthrotull) so thanks again, Sean. Interested to know more about this particular experimental batch, so if you've tried this or any others from Dewar's, please let me know.