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Bruichladdich's Octomore 7.4, Virgin Oak Cask, 7 years old, bottled at 61.2% at 167ppm, 12000 bottles for the world.
Where does one start with this whisky?
Stunning? Special? Doesn't begin to cover it for me to be honest. I was lucky enough to spend my last birthday at Bruichladdich on Islay, where as part of the tasting I was privileged enough to be allow to pull the whisky straight from the cask.
So imagine my surprise when the Spirits Platform contacted me and said they had a little present for me. They were coy, not spilling the beans on just what it might be, so I was absolutely gobsmacked when this 200ml sample arrived.
Unfortunately I was ill with the flu, so unable to taste anything where I could smell/taste reliably, however I'm finally on the mend and able to taste once more!
Let's get into the whisky a little bit shall we? Well it's an Octomore so there's definitely the smoke and peat on this bad boy, but much less then then one would guess. a bit of alcohol on the nose, a heap of oak, a bit of smoky bacon, vanilla, some wet cardboard, there's a small amount of fruit hiding amongst the smoke and meat, apples and sultanas, but this takes time and patience to pull out of the whisky. This is a whisky I could spend hours nosing happily.
On the palate, it is spirity, especially if you're not used to high abv, but if you're used to high abvs it's pretty mild. I found it so approachable. Soft and sweet, again mildly smoky, vanilla, some dark chocolate, and again the fruit, but it's more of a lemony citrus note then the apples and sultanas
I pick up on the nose.
The finish is soft, and dry. A puff of smoke that disappears and then reappears.
This is an absolutely stunning whisky, better then I remembered trying in Scotland, and a whisky which I will be picking up in the near future.