On the nose, the Authenticus is a solid peat blast, almost phenolic. Even after 21 years of maturation, it still smells as smoky as a 10 or 12 year old Islay offering. The peat does not die down even after a few whiffs, and I struggled to find other notes in the nose. Down the throat, Authenticus is as smoky as the nose suggested. You can taste some burning peat and black pepper as you roll it around your tongue. It is only in the finish that the Authenticus gives away some of its Speyside character- a mild layer of fruit and sweetness- which comes late in the finish.
The malt is considerably lighter after airing. Give it some 10-15 minutes to breathe and a lot of its peat gets balanced, making it taste much more like the 21 year old Speyside malt that it is. It is a lot more sweeter now, and the peat is only a mild hint. This goes to show the complexity of this, now rare, offering. All in all, I am delighted to have tried it, and will definitely be on the lookout for the Authenticus that has succeeded it- the BenRiach peated 25 year old!
peat blast! Then some medicine
peat, smoke, black pepper