Supposedly based on a “recipe” from 1903, the Finealta is “lightly peated” and matured in American and oloroso sherry oak. I purchased it at a reasonable price on the ferry between Larvik and Hirtshals as a travel dram on my way to Billund last November.
Nose: Dry wood, some ashes, fruit; apples and apricots, and fruit trees. The fruit is emphasised with water, approaching dried fruits rather than fresh, and some vanilla makes its appearance.
Palate: Vanilla and heat, dried fruits, black pepper or some other spice. Water brings out oven roasted or grilled fruits, definitely a little scorched. Otherwise much of the same.
Comments: I quite like this. Not a world of complexity and oomph, but a rather nice sipping whisky. It worked well as a travel dram, which needs to be easy drinking and a nice thing to share with others (people who may be newbies in the whisky world), it fullfills those criteria perfectly. I’d happily purchase it again if the price is right.
This spirit has matured for five months in a 10 litre cask of Hungarian oak.
Nose: A fair amount of congeners, vanilla, a little cinnamon and apricots. It turns more towards the vegetal with water, I still find cinnamon, but also some black pepper.
Palate: Rice pudding with cinnamon and sugar. Congeners as well. Rougher with water, but the cinnamon still dominates.
Comments: Seems very young, but then it is. The cinnamon is from the oak, I suppose. It’s a bit over the top, really. Less congeners on the nose would have been better, as it is, I rather like it, but not so much that I regret it being unavailable to purchase.
This edition of Preludium is from Mackmyra’s smoked newmake variety that has matured in ex sherry casks.
Nose: Malt, slight smokey character and liquorice. Water brings out fruit, both fresh tropical and something dried, possibly apricots. A somewhat sharp, young off-note is also present.
Palate: Liquorice and a slight smokiness, but also a somewhat woolly, murky “chemical” feel. With water the liquorice is still present, but also raisins and some congeners.
Comments: This is probably the best Preludium I’ve tasted, though that is not neccessarily saying much as my impression of the series as a whole is not very good (though I AM a fan of much of what Mackmyra has released in later years). Smoke and sherry does a lot to conceal any off-notes, so that even though this also has a “young and unfinished” feel, it’s far from undrinkable.