You can’t accuse Bert Bruyneel of picking obvious casks for his Asta Morris label. This is his second Glenburgie already (cf. Glenburgie 1997 Asta Morris), while most other bottlers haven’t had one in years.
Glenburgie 9 yo 2003 (53,6%, Asta Morris 2012, cask ref. AM013, 334 btl.)
Nose: starts in a porridgy / malty way that I don’t really like. It reminds me of Inbev fumes in the morning, if you know what I mean. Soaked grains, toasted bread, burnt vegetal notes. Freshens up after a while, with sweeter grains, dried floral notes and whiffs of linseed oil / paraffin. A little fudge. Hints of moss. Fruity notes (stewed fruits) are not absent, but very much in the background. None of the tropical sparkle of the Glenburgie 1997, this is much darker, more savoury, a little bloated and less to my liking.
Mouth: creamy, sweet and honeyed. Sugary apple juice and gooseberries. Corn flakes. After that it quickly turns towards big herbal notes and heather. Spices towards the end, some cinnamon and light pepper. Again with a roasted, burnt edge and lacking some brightness for my taste.
Finish: medium long, dominated by sweet toffee and bitter herbs.
The combination of burnt notes, punchy herbs and big malty notes makes this a slightly off-beat whisky. I assessed it twice, just to be sure, and I prefer the 1997 by far. Around € 50. Available since a few days.