At a recent launch here in the Netherlands of the Highland Park FIRE a chance was given to taste the second expression in this series that consists out of the whisky called ICE and FIRE. The Highland Park FIRE is matured for 15 years in Port casks and bottled at 45.2%.
The myths behind FIRE tells the story of the realm of the Fire Giants and their epic battle against the Gods to rule the world. According to legend, Surtr was an evil Fire Giant who ruled the Fire Realm. He would sit at the edge of the Kingdom, defending the land holding a burning sword, which shone brighter and hotter than the sun. FIRE explores the destruction and rebirth of the world according to Norse mythology. The legend originates from the oldest written collection of Nordic poems, known as Poetic Edda.
On the nose I can find soft notes of redcurrant, fudge, raspberry, strawberry, vanilla, powdered sugar, marzipan, honey, dried apricots, candied oranges, raisins and a thick syrupy note of maple syrup. There is between all this sweetness also a familiar note of soft mint, heather, kitchen herbs, fresh orange juice and almost a meaty note with something reminding me of gooseberry.
The palate starts for me with pepper, ginger and soft wood notes. They are followed by the same sweet fruity, vanilla and honeyed notes I got before on the nose, but I expected with this length of maturation in Port casks maybe some more fire to come out of this palate. Missing a bit the thick sweeter notes I found on the nose here on the palate.
There is enough vanilla and dried fruit richness for sure, making me think of rich fruit cakes but it needs a good while to open up. The medium length finish ends with a soft feeling of redcurrant, cherry and marzipan. Thanks to Bram and Sietse for sharing this dram and curious to see what will be next for Highland Park!