The Dons kicked off their match preparation for the 2022/23 campaign with a trip to Buckie Thistle's Victoria Park, in a game that was a deserved testimonial match for former player and now Buckie manager Graeme Stewart.
Graeme is being rewarded for his three spells as a player with the Jags and his time in the dugout which began in 2014. Buckie finished second in the Breedon Highland Football League last season, finishing just behind Champions Fraserburgh.
At kick-off, the Dons fans got a first chance to take a look at new signings Liam Scales and Jayden Richardson - as well as the new white away shirt - with a second team waiting in the wings to take over at the break.
Richardson made an early impression on three minutes, getting in behind the Buckie defence down the right and crossing for Vicente Besuijen, whose scissor kick went wide.
MacAskill caused some problems on seven minutes, wriggling forward before winning a free-kick on the Buckie right. MacAskill floated the kick into the back post, Munro heading over the bar. A brisk, swirling wind was not making life easy for the players in the opening moments. The hosts enjoyed some good early pressure, MacAskill prominent, but without ever really threatening the Aberdeen goal.
Jack Milne had to look lively on 22 minutes, a long ball over the top getting Fraser in on goal, Milne producing a vital tackle as Fraser looked to pull the trigger. It was very much a first game of the season look for the ring rusty Dons at this point, after a hard first week back in training.
There was early concern for the Dons as Jack MacKenzie went down injured just past the half hour and after treatment to his right thigh, sensibly he was replaced by Kieran Ngwenya.
On 35, the Dons created a real opportunity, the ball played forward into the run of Ross McCrorie at inside-right, Herbert tipping it behind at his near post. From the resulting corer, the ball found Dante Polvara 16 yards out but after controlling it neatly, his shot flew over the bar.
The Dons should have been ahead on 39 minutes, great work by Connor McLennan to first win the ball and then feed Besuijen down the left. He crossed for Marley Watkins, his low drive pushed onto the post by Herbert, a terrific save, Fyffe completing the clearance.
Polvara was next to prompt things, picking out Ryan Duncan who then helped it on to Richardson overlapping on the right. His cross was snaffled by Herbert as the Dons ended the half in improving fashion.
HALF-TIME: BUCKIE THISTLE 0 ABERDEEN 0
The Dons changed 10 of their 11 at the break, Kieran Ngwenya staying on for the second half. There were a slew of substitutions for the hosts too.
It was the hosts who made the brighter start and on 48 minutes, they were in front, former Aberdeen junior Max Barry lashing an excellent right footed drive past Tom Ritchie and in from just outside the box. Max clearly enjoyed scoring against some of his former U18 team mates.
There was more trouble on 51minutes, MacAskill swinging in an innocuous looking free-kick that took a horrible bounce off the surface just in front of the goalkeeper, Tom Ritchie only able to flip it over the bar as the ball reared up. From the corner, a near post ball was driven in low to MacAskill who clipped his shot just wide of the target.
Aberdeen were nearly on terms after 52 minutes. A left wing corner found David Bates with a free header from 14 yards out but his effort went just wide of the target. Buckie made their next changes on the hour, Adams and MacLennan replacing Goodall and MacAskill.
Lovely footwork and a fine pass from Connor Barron put Aberdeen into the Thistle box. Ngwenya collected and advanced on goal, only to be chopped down by McCabe - penalty. Christian Ramirez stepped up to send the goalkeeper the wrong way from the spot and level things up on 64 minutes.
Milne came on for Barry on 68 minutes in the next Buckie switch. Morrison went down shortly after in a collision with Ramirez and needed extensive treatment, after which he was replaced by Keir in the 74th minute.
Aberdeen were under the cosh two minutes later, Keir pinching the ball in midfield to give the hosts a 3 v 2, but fortunately his final ball was a poor one and the Dons cleared their lines.
A darting run crossfield from Matty Kennedy won a free-kick on 81 minutes, to the right of the D, some 25 yards out. Jonny Hayes stepped up and curled his effort over the wall and over the bar.
Aberdeen had the ball in the net on 83 minutes after great work by Mason Hancock down the right. He worked the ball inside before an attempted clearance went straight to Liam Harvey who tucked the ball away, only to be ruled offside. Adam MacLeod then came on in place of Fraser.
A double save from Herbert after good work from Hayes denied the Dons again after 86 minutes, the resulting corner headed behind by Bates. Herbert then made way for Strong in the Buckie goal.
His first job was to pick the ball out of the back of the net two minutes later. Hayes chased away down the left and his cross went all the way to the back post where Kennedy caught it beautifully first time, smashing it back across goal and into the far corner to bring Aberdeen's first run out of the campaign to a successful conclusion.