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Kilchoman 2007 Vintage bottled 2013

Average score from 2 reviews and 2 ratings 93

Kilchoman 2007 Vintage bottled 2013

Product details

  • Brand: Kilchoman
  • Bottler: Distillery Bottling
  • ABV: 46.0%
  • Vintage: 2007
  • Bottled: 2013

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Kilchoman 2007 Vintage bottled 2013

Last May I travelled to Scotland with my good friends Igor and Jeff, visiting Islay, Campbeltown and Edinburgh. One of the highlights of Islay (which in itself was a highlight of my life) was Kilchoman, the newest and smallest Islay distillery. Founded in 2005, this is a farm distillery on Rockside Farm. No, really. A real working farm. And not a big one. It's tiny. The malting floor is a garage, and they only produce 100,000 litres of alcohol per year. For reals.

But it is lovely, a picture postcard that is unforgettable. They have a very nice cafe (everyone was raving about the soup) with a surprisingly large gift shop. There are a billion reasons to visit Islay - and this is seriously one of them.

Besides some standard expressions, they also have a number of vintages, and also some very limited single casks. This one is the 2007 Vintage, matured for six years in bourbon casks from Buffalo Trace.

The colour is a pale light gold. On the nose, dry grasses, briny seashells and some distant vanilla. The cigar smoke is as if someone just butted out thirty seconds ago: ashy, dry and a little sour. Unlike many Kilchomans, the peat is a gentle ribbon throughout - but becomes brackish. Fresh clean sea air. This is as Islay as it gets. Liquorice too, especially with water, which also adds seaweed and, oddly, sourdough. Fascinating.

On the palate, we have some caramel to go with that vanilla. The peat shows up quickly and grows in strength, contrasting beautifully with the creamy mouthfeel. Pine needles and cigar box. Savoury dried herbs. Medicinal but not pungent. Water somehow harmonizes the peat with the sweet. Outstanding.

The finish shows more oak, with a lovely prickly aftertaste - sage, rosemary and campfire, with some more liquorice all-sorts. This whisky is right up my alley, a perfect marriage of peaty kick and gently sweet complexity. Does it deserve its award for Best Islay Single Malt of 2013 (from Whisky Advocate)? That I cannot answer - but it is excellent.


Having experienced its 6th Birthday in the cask, this is the oldest Kilchoman released yet.

A fresh grassy, minty, toffee and very peaty nose greets us straight away. A zesty hint of citrus awaits later on. With some herbs - this is alive, refreshing and ready to grab you.

A sweeter and thicker palate than the nose would suggest, but it still has the mint and peat smoke in abundance. And then a bit of caramel flavour really coats the tongue - much thicker feel than one would expect for such a young whisky.

A long and relatively sweet finish but the smokiness lingers the longest.

I wish I had an 88mph Delorean as I am so keen to find out what long-aged Kilchoman is like. Their releases so far have been amazingly good for such young malts. However after chatting with their rep at last October's whisky festival, I believe that 2007 is the oldest they currently have stocked and ageing, (with 2005 and 2006 distillations all being bottled or sold to Indie Bottlers). So we're looking at 2017 at least for an official 10 year old and probably to 2019/2020 before a 12YO is released, (although they did also say they don't believe in Age Statements).

I just picked up a bottle of this - looking forward to trying it!

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