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“Oh, is that right? You don’t like whisky, do you? Here, try this…”

I’ve converted more people with a bottle of Nectar d’or than with just about any other whisky I’ve owned. I first had it in a pub in Tours, France while visiting my wife’s grandparents. It was poured by an affable French bartender named Stéphane, the owner of Paddy Flaherty’s. (Yes, there is such a thing as an affable French bartender – especially outside of Paris.) When Stéphane hands over a dram with a sly smile, you know you’re in for a treat. And I was. Up until then, I’d thought I prefered whiskies with a lot of fire in the belly – big, bold, manly scotches that scorched the earth and put hair on your chest. But it was one of the first whiskies that opened my palette up to a wider range of flavours.

Because Nectar d’Or is matured in Sauternes wine casks. And Sauternes wine is an almost syrupy, magnificent dessert wine – with good bottles going for a lot more than your decent bottle of whisky. Mix the clarity of a high-toned Glenmorangie with Sauternes and you have a result which is simply… brilliant.

It’s smooth and taut, with a gorgeous amber gold colour. It doesn’t overwhelm with its potent whisky flavour, but it doesn’t lose itself to the back-end sweetness either. It is simply a near-perfect combination of two flavours which now that you’ve tasted it, seem inseperable.There’s vanilla, cream and honey in there, with pear too. I call it the least manly whisky I own – it has no overwhelming bite or fire, it’s all smoothness. It doesn’t necessarily make it girly, either. It’s still strong stuff at 46%, but delicately so.

All of which makes it good for newcomer and whisky-lover alike.

This definitely scores a resounding Sweet baby Jesus that’s good!

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