Belgian bottler Klubb23 launched this young Caol Ila in the new series Fallen Angels, for the benefit of Plane Hunters Recovery Team vzw, an organization that is engaged in excavating and preserving WWII fighter planes that crashed in Belgium and the Netherlands. This first release was bottled with the Royal Air Force's Avro Lancaster BIII JA695 bomber on the label. This bomber flew over Flanders in the night of 11 to 12 April 1944 with the mission to bomb the railway junction in Aachen, so that the German army would be thwarted in the supply of its troops. All this was in line with the Allied plan to prepare for the Normandy landings on 6 June 1944. JA695 was one of nine bombers that were shot down that night. Of the seven crew members, only one survived. So much for the history lesson. Now we're going to taste!
The nose is particularly herbal and even a bit dirty with notes of chewing tobacco, garden herbs, nutmeg and roast beef. Something like fermenting grapes, before some maritime notes make their appearance. Think seaweed and brackish water. Some more rotting wood and wet forest soil. Atypical to say the least.
Caol Ila comes through nicely with its typical maritime elements, while the peat smoke creates a sweet and sour smoke development. But it also remains so sweet to taste that this could not have been anything other than a sherry cask. Red fruit, mulled wine, caramel, anise and peat. That's kind of it... and that is very complex!
The finish is certainly that too and moreover very long in the bargain. As far as I'm concerned, a Finish with a capital F and the best part of this Ileach.
Nice, even somewhat daring release of Klubb23.