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Octomore is known for being the most heavily peated whisky in the world. It is not a distillery (it used to be one, though), but a recipe that is distilled and bottled by Bruichladdich in long, thin black bottles. This Ochadamh-mor matured for 5 years on American oak and was bottled at cask strength. It has a ppm of 167.
While the peat is prominent (no, seriously), it also has quite some goodies in store such as vanilla, caramelized appels and Mrs Bridges Strawberry & Cream candy. That is nicely balanced with a seriously brackish hint of smoked fish. Prickly on the nose and very peppery indeed. Adding water gives you more ashes and smoke, but diminishes the sweetness tremendously.
It is powerful and peppery on the palate with vanilla, citrus, sugar candy. At the same time it is enormously brackish. Loads of peat, upholstered with cod oil and olive oil. The second sip is much nicer. The fruit slowly creeps past the alcohol and peat. Water makes it, contrary to the nose, sweeter on the palate.
How could the finish be anything but very long with so much peat and such an ABV. It remains sweet and very spicy.
The whisky is not as extreme as you would expect. The newest Octomore, the 05.1/1_169, has a ppm of 169, currently the world’s highest. This 04.1 will set you back 120 EUR, which is very expensive for a 5 Year Old whisky. But it is very good.