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Port Charlotte PC7 Sin An Doigh Ileach

1 And 1 Sadly Doesn't Always Equal 2

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@OJKReview by @OJK

25th Jan 2011


  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Nose, Taste, Finish and Balance are graded out of 2.5 each:

Nose: Upon encountering a young, heavily peated Islay whisky, one may expect to find certain characteristic flavour notes present on the nose, and present they most definitely are here. However immediately upon first nosing of this PC7 it is clear that this is unlike any other whisky nose we may have encountered before, let alone any Islay nose. It is a certain meaty quality to the aroma that immediately leaves us disorientated, almost forcing us to recoil. Mercifully however, as the whisky is left to sit for a moment, the peculiar notes of raw lamb mince slowly smooth off from their initial sharp delivery. More specifically it seems to be a raw lamb mince wrapped in cellophane, then marinated in windscreen wiper fluid. Indeed this nose is as hard to fathom as it sounds. As we bravely dig deeper underneath these alien notes we find some more familiar friends in the shape of toffeed seaweed, salted almonds dipped in caramel, vanilla double cream, and finally fresh pomegranate nestling on a bed of mossy wood. As we go in for another approach however, the cellophane-wrapped lamb mince seems to have given way to a slightly different (although no less jarring) meat-influenced note, notably pepperoni and jalapeno flavoured pizza. It sadly feels a little like experimental cuisine gone wrong. 1.5

Taste: On the palate, normality seems to be once again restored. Although perhaps it would be a little harsh to describe this as normal, perhaps I should in fact qualify it as being a palate void of the influence of meat. I say harsh as I suppose firstly who am I to say that raw meat notes aren't perfectly acceptable, and also secondly there is nothing normal about the velvet-like delivery of candied apples, toffeed tangerines, spiced almond brittle, and seaweed soaked in molten brown sugar. A luxurious tongue massage courtesy of Bruichladdich. 2.5

Finish: A pungent and tingly aged dutch cheese, accompanied by cashew nuts, strawberry jam, pineapple and spiced treacle. Fizzy charcoal sherbet offers a striking counterbalance, before spicy extra-strong herbal mints overpower every other flavour note within a 5 mile radius. 2.0

Balance: I feel a little lost. This is most certainly a very fine whisky, one can feel it in its construction, in it's depth of flavour, and in its luscious delivery on the palate. However it's on the nose that I'm afraid it somewhat loses me, and I regret not being able to fathom it. Conceptually speaking I'm very much in favour of unique and clear flavour notes, these are what make a whisky stand out from anything else you may have tried. Normally I would even applaud such flavour notes even if they weren't totally to my everyday liking, just because I feel that's what high-end whisky should be trying to do. Sadly though in this case, the extremity of certain flavour notes on the nose leaves me somewhat alienated. Once you pick up the scent of raw lamb mince, it's very hard to shake it off. Unfortunately therefore I find this whisky adding up to slightly less than the sum of its unarguably sophisticated parts 2.0

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