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Port Askaig 100° Proof

Good Value Cask Strength . . . (Caol Ila?!)

4 387

@RianCReview by @RianC

23rd Jun 2018

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  • Nose
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  • Taste
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  • Finish
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  • Balance
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  • Overall
    87

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Port Askaig, and this bottling in particular, is widely reported to be Caol Ila; the names a rather suggestive hint but no guarantee! It seems this is widely available around the globe and usually at a decent price - around £45 in the UK. The website says it's a mix of 7 - 9 old whisky.

I've had this bottle open about a month now and this is a 25 ml pour with half a tsp of water.

Nose: Quite spirity neat hence the need for a good splash of water but it calms down nicely to reveal sooty lemons, a familiar peaty tang and licorice. There's a touch of leather with sea shell minerality - wet pebbles on a salty shore kind of thing - ash and is that a whiff of wet dog?

Taste: Follows on from the nose really. Sweet upfront with the lemon and then goes sour and drying with the leather and licorice and some star anise coming out more as it turns slightly sour.

Finish is longer than you may expect and the soot and ash start to come to the fore. You're left with quite a lingering and thick mouth coating, ashy sweetness that's very appealing. I'm tempted to say the finish is the outstanding feature, which for a young whisky, is pretty good going.

This, in my humble opinion, is Caol Ila. That leathery, lemon note with the sooty, mineralic peat nails it down for me - but I could well be wrong . . . Either way, it's a very enjoyable whisky and I find that even for a bit of a peaty bruiser it lends itself to a warm day such as this due to the very lemon forward nature of the dram. The finish is a belter (reminiscent of Ardbeg 10, but not quite!) and given what some young CIs go for it's excellent vfm. It needed a bit of time to open up as it was rather on the nippy side at first and definitely benefits from a good helping of water. A peater for all seasons . . . hooray!

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3 comments

@Hewie
Hewie commented

Another insightful review - Thanks. I've not tried this yet, thought about it a few times though. I do love that sooty lemon combo. It runs about 20% less than the G&M cask strength Caol Ila here in NZ so it's not high on my list, but I'd be very keen to sample it one day. Be great to do a H2H with a CS Caol Ila.

about one year ago 1Who liked this?

@Victor
Victor commented

@RianC thanks for your interesting review. I haven't seen this one around yet, but would certainly like to try it.

about one year ago 1Who liked this?

@RianC
RianC commented

I recently finished this bottle but felt compelled to add a little footnote, which I'll put here as I can't edit the review now.

This bottle carried on 'opening up' and when it got down to the last third or so is when it really shone. It became much more palatable neat and the flavours took on more depth, especially the leather note. Scoring it on the last few drams I'd have given this 89 possibly touching 90. My advice - give this one lots of time.

about one year ago 3Who liked this?

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