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Caol Ila Moch

Average score from 8 reviews and 18 ratings 86

Caol Ila Moch

Product details

  • Brand: Caol Ila
  • Bottler: Distillery Bottling
  • ABV: 43.0%

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Caol Ila Moch

Ha, Caol Ila, it is my favorite Islay whisky. The new Port Ellen in my book, but keep that under your hat before the prices go sky high. Coal Ila Moch is a NAS release. It is Gaelic for ‘dawn’, no more and no less. It is rumoured to be a bit less peaty that the standard 12 Year Old and thus more accessible.

Very fresh and young nose on limoncello and lemon pie with some vanilla. Hay and even a mild stable scent. Make that manure, although that sounds a lot worse than it smells. Turns wonderfully sweet and creamy with a smoky accent. But fresh and lively. Not peat in your face, far from it.

The arrival is pretty soft with again that reticent smokiness. Some ashes and a lot of saltiness before the yellow fruit kicks in. It is even a bit candied now. Becomes sweeter all the time. Hint of espresso, but hidden beneath the fruit. Nice balance, despite its simplicity.

In the finish, the peat and the salt again take the reins.

Indeed more accessible than the 12 Year Odl. Softer and sweeter. If I were an Ileach, this would be my breakfast whisky. Ah, the dawn indeed. Thanks, Pat. Around 30 EUR, which is very fair indeed.


Ok... drank the bottle. I have been a avid whiskey fan, and this is my first review. The fact that I upended the bottle is the only reason I am mustering the balls to finally write a review, as most of you have already done I'm sure. I have seen enough reviews to know what the format should be, and this may be a slight variation from the norm:

Nose: To be honest, I smell tequilla. Not poetic, but frank. I have also been drinking my Ardbeg Supernova 2010 as comparison,and enjoy the nose of that much more. The "tequilla" nose is the only part of this dram that disappoints as far as I am concerned.

Taste: I do enjoy the taste. Not as medicinal as Laphroaig, but crisp and clean with lemon and iodine showing.

Finish: ... I like it. Long finish of lingering peat.

Ultimatum: An enjoyable whisky. Really wanted to love this, but seems middle of the road. I suppose Talisker and Ardbeg still take the cake.

Are there any whiskeys that are a close call to the style of Talisker? Was an absolute Islay guy until 57 degrees north.

Good review! I've heard some good things about Caol IIa whiskies. Makes me really wanna try them.

The closes t thing I've seen to a Talisker (and this is not the 57 North) is actually a japanese whisky that I heard compared to Caol IIA and that would be the Hakushu 12 yr old. Brilliant with flavors of smoke and peat, but enough fruit to keep even smoke haters happy. Definitely try a dram of it if you get the chance!

Thanks SquidgyAsh... Like I said, I really wanted to like it. I had a bottle that I really liked (think it was a distillers edition) and so bought a few more, but they were just a little less enjoyable than the other Islays, and a few of the island scotches in my opinion. Talisker really grew on me, and is now my favorite. Funny you mention the Hakushu 12... was real close to getting it, but got cold feet and went for a Laphroaig 18 yr instead... maybe I should've trusted my gut.


For those wishing to explore the light smoker side of malts, this is a great place to start. Don't be afraid, it's a gem of lightly peated quality that might just encourage you to venture beyond your normally safe Speyside and Highland drams.

Taking its name from the Gaelic for ‘dawn’. Caol Ila Moch is the first single malt from the distillery to be selected entirely on the basis of its taste, rather than age, cask wood, strength or finish.

Pale gold in colour with a good viscosity, the nose is unreduced, clean and fresh like wet, salty sand after the tide has receded. Some smoke behind, as from a gentle bonfire.

The mouthfill is filling, oily (not too much and the right type!)

On the palate it hits you as gentle and smooth, sweet and salty with a balancing acidity, and fresh as a sea breeze. The trademark clean and smoky character of Caol Ila is here. Appetising. Adding water, just a drop or 2, don't drown it, gives a smoother, softer, sweeter feel, still very maritime, with a nice texture. Sweetly drying overall.

The finish, although short, drying and warming with a little bitterness, with a lingering light smoky aftertaste.

This is an absolutely straightforward, no nonsense Caol Ila. Crisp, assertive, direct, and unmistakeable. It's a real favourite at our whisky club and I urge you to try it. Just close your eyes and walk on that sandy beach on a evening as the sun goes down. This whisky will take you right there.


Caol Ila (pronounced 'Cull Ee-la), is a remote Scottish distillery, situated in a quiet wooded bay on Islay near Port Askaig that has produced great whisky for 160 years. Its whiskies tend to be lighter than other Islay's, with peat and floral notes the order of the day.

And so to Moch. Its not an expensive dram, retailing at about £36 in the UK at the time of writing.

Colour: Very pale, probably the palest whisky I have seen. It shouts 'clean and fresh in the glass'

Nose: On the nose it doesn't disappoint. Fresh, warm firesides, slight zest and a gentle and very beautiful peat back note.

Mouthfeel: Fresh, not oily, light.

Palate: The first thing you notice is that its creamy, smooth, fresh and a low peat taste that suits my palate. I don't like big peat monsters. Very fresh, slightly lemony. Not harsh in any way, just very smooth and light.

Finish: Fairly long, drying and leaves a creamy feel in your mouth, begging you to drink more. The peat never gets in the way. Surprisingly complex.

Conclusion: For the price, a absolute steal. Its very classy, easy drinking and dangerously smooth. This fresh, warming whisky is never overpowered by the peat, which harmonises very well, providing an almost perfect balance. One to be drunk by the fireside after a winter's walk with friends.

Highly recommended.


O holy... Great Whisky..


Caol Ila Moch (43%, OB 2010)

Nose: fresh and youngish. Mildly smoky with a sweet, candied profile. Lemon zest and lemon pie. Ginger lemonade. Hints of lemongrass. Coastal notes as well. Pleasantly harmless.

Mouth: oily but the body is a little soft. Sweet, malty and quite fruity. Gentle peat with wood smoke. Creamy lemon (which sometimes had a fragrant, soapy edge). Still quite maritime.

Finish: not too long, with the sweet malt fading first and the smoke having the last word.


We tried this at the 2011 Feis Ile and bought a bagful of bottles, one of which we dropped as soon as we got home. Damn! Still, it means we had to drink the remains. Damn!!

Nose: Like a peaty lemsip, quite floral with green apple and lemon skins.

Taste: More lemon, coconut, artificial sweetener. Peat still feels very young. Light rum and raisin ice cream.

Verdict: Intruiging but perhaps a bit light for die hard Caol Ila fans. Very pleasant, though.

The above review was written by Pat from The Whisky Tasting Club. Also, I should point out that I'm not accusing Diageo if adding artificial sweeteners to their whiskies, that's just how it tasted.

This review and score is by Pat. Tony probably liked it more than Pat, an excellent session whisky in his opinion. This was reinforced by the speed we drank the spilt contents of the bottle.


It was only a question of time until Diageo’s turn to hop on the NAS bandwagon, and release an expression with a nice Gaelic sound to it, wasn’t it? So, it’s here, the new Caol Ila ‘Moch’ (meaning: dawn in Gaelic).

It’s not everyday that Caol Ila releases a new OB and this one got good reviews from bloggers and whisky sites who tasted it recently. I was quite keen on trying this one out…

So what is so different about this expression? First, as i noted, it’s a NAS bottling which means it’s probably younger than the entry level 12 year old Caol Ila we all know (and which i consider to be a lovely dram, despite the “bon ton” to trash OB Caol Ilas and say they are not as good as an equivalent Laphraoig or Ardbeg). In addition this one is supposed to be less ‘peaty’ and smoky than the ‘regular’ OBs, some kind of a Caol Ila counterpart to the Infamous Ardbeg Blasda.

Nose: Citrus notes among coastal maritime notes of sea spray, fruit and gentle smoke.

Palate: Sweet entry, than a wave of smoke comes in! smoked bacon, a bit of rubber, peat, and malty-sweet cereals.

Finish : Medium on smoke, cereals and malt.

Bottom line

lighter and less aggressive than the 12, yet round and nice! A lovely entry point people getting acquainted with Islay malts, and a very drinkable Islay, with a lot of smoke, but lighter on the rubber medicinal notes.

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