For some distilleries, you can quite accurately predict the aromatic profile if you know the vintage and the cask type. For others, there are surprises sometimes. A good example is this Bruichladdich 1992 in the latest batch from The Single Malts of Scotland.
Bruichladdich 23 yo 1992
(55,4%, Single Malts of Scotland 2016, hogshead #3839, 237 btl.)
Nose: lots of dried grasses, greasy notes and honeysuckle. Melon aromas. Discreet hints of greengages and dried apple. Plain barley notes. Nice coastal notes too, salty sea air and wet gravel. A light farmy note. Quite subtle and certainly idiosyncratic, I like that.
Mouth: again very barley-ish, with something of beer. Hay, dusty grains. A Clynelish-like waxy side. Then vague melon / greengage flavours, but without the sweetness. Waxy lemons. Then it moves towards chalky and salty notes. Liquorice, brine, hints of chestnuts and peppery oak. An uncommon ensemble, clearly produced before the new owners introduced modern production parameters.
Finish: long, on dried pears, waxy notes and something lightly smoky.
This Laddie shows a lot of Highlands elements. The wax, the coastal notes, the overall dryness… all add to its austere, slightly idiosyncratic profile. Not an easy one but it really grew on me. Around € 150 from TWE and other retailers.