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This Caol Ila was distilled on 9th February 1982 (damn, I was a 12 year old school kid at the time!) and slept for 25 years on bourbon hogshead #741, to be bottled on 17th April 2007. Only 220 bottles were available at an amazing 60,8% ABV. The angels were rather economical, eh? It was bottled by WIN (Whisky Import Netherlands) under their First Cask label.
The nose is – despite the very high ABV – very soft and not very typical for this Ileach. While the peat is certainly there, it remains in the background. I get canned sardines, salted butter, caramel and a pinch of mint. Somewhat unexpected, but very nice. Adding water brings out the more coastal character: seaweeds, brine and oysters.
Once confronted with the taste buds, it’s an explosion of smoked fish, brine, white pepper and sweet peat. Man, this is good. And utterly drinkable too. Nevertheless, I added a few drops of water. Still very coastal, with an additional licquorice and citrus.
The finish is medium long on peat and lime.
Looking in my scorebook, it seems that no Caol Ila ever got less than 80. Truly good stuff. This one will set you back about 110 EUR.