Cooper’s Choice (a label from the Vintage Malt Company) launched this NAS Caol Ila early this year. It matured on American oak before being finished on an oloroso sherry cask. Will you look at that color! At cask strength, naturally.
Wonderfully dark and sweet nose on raisins, plums and overripe peach, the kind of which the juice runs down your chin when you take an huge bite. Smoked ham, kelp, roast beef and tobacco… and a good helping of salt. Bacon on the barbecue drenched in soya sauce. And boy, is it good!
Sweet and creamy despite the ABV. Sweet goes head-to-head with salt, while the smoke runs of with the prize. Boy, oh boy, the house is on fire! The umami traits are still present, but are quickly overpowered by lots of sweetness in the guise of prune syrup, dark honey and a marmalade of peach and apples. Rhubarb. And then suddenly it turns pretty salty again. There is a lot going on here and it’s quite a party. Towards the end some bitterness like walnuts appears. Very spicy too: nutmeg, oregano and finally some balsamic vinegar. Delicious!
Very long finish on tar, toasted oak and smoked ham wrapped around a date.
I’m sure this came from the same stock as the Vital Spark and Caol Ila 2010 from Adelphi that I recently try. Each and every one of them is great. Thx, Marcel.