Octomore - the most heavily peated whisky ever!
| 15 Jan 2009 |
A good friend of mine had the foresight to sign up for a case of Octomore several years ago.
He recently took delivery of the bottles and I eagerly accepted a sample of the potent potion...
(Thanks, Lukas!) Here are my tasting notes:
Octomore 2002 5 y.o. ("futures" bottling, 46%):
Very phenolic nose with iodine and intense, concentrated peat. Also yeasty and cereally with nice fruity,
minty notes. The palate is musty and "dirty" with peat and tar. Develops malt, sweetness and fruity notes.
The finish is nice, peaty and spicy with a note of grilled meat.
It was fascinating to try this "peat monster" but I actually found it a little
disappointing - it's not as good as the
6 y.o. Port Charlotte
or this 5 y.o. Lagavulin,
for example. Hopefully, Octomore's balance will improve after a few more years in wood...
I'll look forward to tasting it at 8 or 10 years of age!
Note: In addition to the "futures" bottling, the first regular release of Octomore
was made in December: 6000 bottles - already sold out!
Recently, I've also tasted a few of the new bottlings from Diageo:
Caol Ila Distiller's Edition 1996 (bottled 2008):
Peaty nose, also spicy and fruity (a bit like a barbecued, marinated steak).
Sweet palate, fruity and a little spicy. The peat is subdued at first but grows stronger.
All in all it's quite nice but a little too sweet and it lacks the complexity of the
Glen Elgin 16 y.o. (58.5%):
Nice nose with notes of orange marmalade, brown sugar and a hint of cinnamon. Rich, sweet
palate, at first fruity with citrus fruits, then develops spices. Dry, spicy, slightly
Lagavulin 12 y.o. (bottled 2008 at 56.4%):
Nose: Thick, musty peat, also fruity. The palate is surprisingly mild and
sweet at first, with fruity notes but turns spicy and develops lots of peat. Very peaty
finish with coal and tar. All in all peaty and powerful but also balanced.
It's quieter and more restrained than the earlier editions. It's also drier, spicier
and more focused. The strong, silent type! =) It's very good - the new
whisky of the month - but not quite as good
as the 2005 bottling.
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