I bought this by accident, I normally prefer to not buy the watered-down versions, but the price was too attractive!
Imperial 1998 Gordon & Macphail 11 Year Old / 42%
Bottled for Amer Gourmet in Spain, this Gordon & Macphail Imperial was distilled on 9/9/1998, possibly just a month before its closure, and bottled on 6/14/2010 from refill sherry hogshead #1223. This is bottle #90 of 378, and it is natural colour and un-chill-filtered (NCF).
- Color: yellow gold (0.5)
- Nose: wet grass, whipped cream, almonds, lemon, and fresh asphalt
- Taste: thin, quite green, a little hot; there is a dollop of sour cream and some oak, lime, and Oloroso sherry
- Finish: medium; graham crackers, creaminess, and some citrus
There are a few points not in favour for this particular bottle:
- It is a special run for a regional Supermarket
- It’s nowhere near cask strength
- It’s quite young in refill sherry
- The last few years of Imperial before it collapsed have a notable falloff in quality
That said, it has enough distillate-forward spirit remaining to give you some kind of a clue as to what Imperial was about, even if it lacks the richness it could have obtained with another decade and cask-strength.
PS: If you can find the exact date of the last distillation batch of Imperial liquid, let me know in the comments! I found 10/2/1998 (MM/DD/YYYY) on Whiskybase.