Having a soft spot for new make and then getting hold of a sample of spirit from your favorite Islay distillery? Well, double whammy! This new make is not commercially available, but I will nevertheless gladly share my thoughts with you. Very clean nose on raw barley and – don’t laugh – peas and carrots from a tin. The Scots call this ‘two veg’, referring to this popular mix of two vegetables. But already it sports a lovely touc of smoke, and something that reminds me of potato skins. But so clean, you could wipe a baby’s ass with it. That all returns on the palate, but is joined by some sweetness and lots of earthy notes. Again raw barley which is actually quite nice. I am transported to the malt floor (let the fact that Caol Ila does not have one, not get in the way of this lovely reference). Water? No way. This goes down very easily. Too easily perhaps, but that might just be me. Long, clean and softly smoky finish. There is a reason why I am so fond of new make. This is a prime example. Bottle it and I will buy it. Funny detail: this is my 100th encounter with Caol Ila.