24 drams till Christmas 2016 #13: Caol Ila 2005 11 yo by Gordon & MacPhail

Caol Ila 2005 11 yo by Gordon & MacPhail

Caol Ila 2005 11 yo by Gordon & MacPhailDram data:
Distillery: Caol Ila
Bottler: Gordon & MacPhail
Distilled: 21.01.2005
Bottled: 20.07.2016
Age: 11 years
Limitation: –
Casks: 4 First-Fill Sherry Butts
Alcohol: 57,3%
unchillfiltered and uncoloured
Whiskybase link

Young Caol Ila. You can’t go wrong with intense, young Caol Ila, right? Let’s have a taste of this one, from Gordon&MacPhail’s Cask Strength Collection.

Tasting notes:
 light gold
The nose is very intense on the first nasal contact! Intense, phenolic peat smoke with alcohol, vanilla and white pepper/horseradish sharpness! Whoa! But I like it! Exactly why we love young, heavily peated whisky! Let’s wait a few minutes… Ah ha! Ginger, peaty apple compote and something spicy… used mulled wine spices? To be honest, I would’ve guessed ex-bourbon maturation, but the leaflet says first-fill ex-Sherry butts. On the other hand… it could’ve been dry sherry, there is a dryness… With water: same general profile, but less alcohol! Let’s see what the palate has to offer!  Continue reading “24 drams till Christmas 2016 #13: Caol Ila 2005 11 yo by Gordon & MacPhail”

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Tasting: Octomore 2008 Virgin Oak cask sample

Octomore 2008 Virgin Oak cask sample

 Octomore 2008 Virgin Oak cask sampleDram data:
Distillery: Bruichladdich
Bottler: official
Distilled: 2008
Bottled: sample drawn 2015
Age: 7-ish
Limitation: unavailable
Casks: virgin oak cask 1202
Alcohol: 64,4%%
unchillfiltered and natural colour

Tasting notes:
dark amber
So Bruichladdich has done it again! The latest Octomore 7.4 “virgin oak” release is out. Well, all virgin oak? Nopedy nope! Only 25% of the liquid is actual full-time virgin oak matured. I haven’t got a sample of that one and a full bottle might exceed my budget, so let’s rummage through my sample cabinet – I think there might be something similar. Hey! What’s that? A 2008 virgin oak Octomore cask sample, drawn from the cask for the 2015 Feis Ile warehouse tasting with Jim McEwan. That’s the ticket! Uncut, unblended, let’s see what it’s like! On the nose there’s not that much peat. Well, that’s not surprising if you look at Bruichladdich’s stills, they produce a much lighter distillate than, say Laphroaig or Ardbeg. Still quite a lot of peat, but not overwhelming and that’s good! A slight alcoholic tingling, but you’d never guess this was 64% ABV! Very well-integrated! Fresh vanilla, vanilla pods, toasted cask, caramelised oak sap, Lapsang Souchong (unboilt), burning oak staves and a coal-fired steam engine squirting oil around, burnt toffee, heather, ginger, slightly toasted orange peel and a squirt of citrus providing a hint of distillery character. Continue reading “Tasting: Octomore 2008 Virgin Oak cask sample”

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