Auchentoshan has two expressions named Springwood and Heartwood, both exclusive to travel retail (at least they once were). While Springwood is a bourbon-matured release, Heartwood uses deeply charred bourbon casks and Spanish Oloroso sherry casks. The term refers to the rich core heart of the tree.
Auchentoshan Heartwood is said to be around 7 years of age. Unfortunately it’s also coloured with E-150.
Auchentoshan Heartwood (43%, OB 2015)
Nose: a rather dry, almost grassy kind of sherry. Hints of wood chips, giving it a green touch. Orange oils and lime zest, yellow raisins and toffee. Apple peel and hints of cocoa.
Mouth: starts sweet, with raisins and a little caramel, but it quickly picks up peppery notes and some resinous oak, making it bittersweet. Some toasted (burnt) nuts and a biting grainy note.
Finish: not too long, with zesty citrus and the bitterness of dark chocolate.
I’m not so sure. It’s rather complex for a NAS composition, but there’s an astringency on the palate and throughout the finish that I found a bit unpleasant. Nonetheless a full-bodied Lowlander. Around € 40-50 for a 1-litre bottle.