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The Caol Ila distillery is located on Islay, near Port Askaig, overlooking the strait between Islay and Jura, and was founded in 1846. Its name derives from the Gaelic for 'Sound of Islay'. The distillery belongs to Diageo, and in addition to being sold as a single malt is used heavily in blends such as Johnnie Walker and Black Bottle.
The nose starts with a punch of brine and salt, followed by wet grass and a malty sweetness. At the end the smoke pushes through, together with some tar. A lovely nose, and very well balanced, too!
The palate is medium-bodied, oily, and very peppery. Again brine and salt both play a big role here.
The finish is long, warming, and dry. Pepper and brine last until the very end. Mouth watering!
I very much like this standard Caol Ila. It is a little bit on the wild side, very briny and salty, but all the same well balanced. This goes very well with food or simply as a refresher during long walks in the afternoon.