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(£250 per litre)
Made solely from barley grown on Irene's Farm in Islay (peated to 133 PPM) and aged for five years in mostly second-fill American whiskey barrels, this is a fascinating study of how a single-vintage low-yield harvest affects the whisky character. This has intense notes of malted barley, black tea, golden syrup, burning heather and smoke.
The Octomore 9 series has been named dialogos (dialogue in ancient Greek) in recognition of the whisky's ability to provoke debate amongst whisky enthusiasts.Tasting Notes (1)
- Salt (powder)
Tasting notes from the producer
Malted barley, Horlicks, the smell of the mash going into the mashtun. Heather wildfire, black tea, golden syrup, lemon sponge.
Golden syrup in the tin, smoked tea, wort, malted barley, pear, peach melba. Sea spray, heather flowers.
Smoke, toasted oak, rye bread, salt, ozone.
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I'm a big fan of this whisky - as the distiller's say, it shouldn't work but it does. But it does polarise somewhat - those who go for a barley, peaty, smokey aroma and flavour will love this one, but those who don't won't like it. But that means there's more for me!
Legs fast start and run, reflecting the high ABV. High viscosity oily, legs thick but not too wide. Starts sweet, then smokey almost immediately, ortho, meta and para cresols all present, medicinal, hospital, sticking plaster, slightly germoline. Malty, bread, Sweet syrup and sweet Horrlicks. Increasingly Strong dominant musty smell. Damp old trench coat dominates later, eventually softens. Medicinal aromas wax and wane as does mustiness. Mustiness takes time to recede. Sweet vanilla in background emerges then disappears. Burnt toast comes through after half hour or so. Sweet candied Apple in background. Then that mustiness returns. Surprisingly complex for such a young whisky. Is the barley Golden Promise???? Sweet initial taste, then Briney. Licorice and anisee. Sweet bread taste at end. Finish is peaty, smokey ah the syringol and guaiacol at last. Low kiln temperature to produce high ppm creates a phenolic imbalance with Ortho Meta and Para Cresol suppressing other phenols. Finish is long, but surprisingly gentle and not too peaty. Quite astringent. Rating is taking into consideration the youthfulness of the whisky and making that allowance. A bit rough at times.
I was hesitant about spending that much money on a 5 year old whisky but I would gladly buy again (or preferably have some one else buy me one). It is earth shatteringly good. The aroma is incredible. The tasting notes above really nail this whiskey. You get all the flavours mentioned and it is devine. So much smoke and malt with the lemon cake at the end. The taste is absolute nectar. Think back to the one whisky that really got you into whisky, that one dram that made you realise just what a whisky could be. This is like that but times ten. This has to be one of the greatest whisky's I've ever had.
Another great whisky from the Octomore stable
This stuff is exceptional. Tried some at The Whisky Show, and then had to buy a bottle there. If you like peaty whiskies, then along with the Kilchoman 2018 Founders Cask, it is my whisky of the year. Young, and strong ABV, but not harsh. I have never tasted barley so clearly in a whisky, a flavour profile I adore in Kilchoman Machir Bay. It's a true experience and was far better than the 9.1 or 9.2 which while good, don't have this freshness. May buy another one... Nose: You get a very strong and fresh barley smell on the first sniff. First day after harvest, with a roaring bonfire somewhere in the distance. A few medicinal and floral notes. Mouth: Absolutely incredible malted barley flavour, which retains its freshness from the nose. Slight taste of a farm, in a pleasant way. Peat is smoky and salty but not sharp, and surprisingly not overpowering. Incredibly smooth considering its age. There is a mild fruitiness, maybe mild citrus, but more of a grain undertone. Finish: Bonfire and barbecue on the beach - leaves your mouth with a taste of toasted grapes - may have had some maturation in wine casks.
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