Whisky Connosr

Rock Oyster 18 Year Old

Out With the Old

7 988

@OdysseusUnboundReview by @OdysseusUnbound

15th Jun 2021


Rock Oyster 18 Year Old
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

I've enjoyed every Douglas Laing blended malt I've tried. Whoever is responsible for the cask selection over there is doing a fantastic job. Rock Oyster is a vatting of malt whiskies from the various islands on Scotland's West Coast. Curiously, this offering was recently renamed "Rock Island" because, according to some internet sources, the name "Oyster" put some people off. Weird. Oh well. Changing a name isn't as big a deal as, say, removing Non-Chillfiltered from your official packaging (I'm looking at you, Glendronach). Rock Oyster 18 Year Old is bottled at 46.8% abv, natural colour (no E150a) and it is not chill-filtered (HUZZAH!!!). According to the interweb machine, this is a blend of whiskies from Arran, Islay (Laphroaig? Caol Ila? I don't know), Jura and Orkney (HP? Scapa?).

Tasting notes

  • Nose (undiluted): vanilla, peaches, melon, salty and/or briny, iodine, light smoke and campfire ash, a bit of ripe banana
  • Palate: medium bodied, smoke on arrival, brine, iodine (Laphroaig? Bowmore?), some lemon zest, cashews, leather, banana skins, and as weird as it sounds...I'm getting a bit of raw chocolate chip cookie dough. Yum.
  • Finish: long and warming, briny, light oak tannins, tobacco, leather, sugar cookies and a malty finish
  • Thoughts: The longer this lingers in the glass, the more I'm convinced there's some Bowmore in the mix. That's a good thing for me since I love Bowmore. The blend is rich and well balanced. No element dominates or feels out of whack. Another winner from Douglas Laing. I'd love to try the newer releases as the re-named "Rock Island" line contains a NAS, a 10 year, and a 21 year version.

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Victor commented

@OdysseusUnbound thank you for your review. You will admit that you love Bowmore? Good for you! The few, the proud.

Oyster lovers never seem to be able to understand when somebody doesn't like to eat oysters. I am one of those people who is turned off by Oyster in the name of something I am planning to drink.

$54 average world asking price is quite inexpensive for any 18 years age-stated whiski.

3 years ago 3Who liked this?

OdysseusUnbound commented

@Victor I’ve never eaten oysters, but the imagery on a bottle of whiski leaves me indifferent. I will never hide nor apologize for my love of Bowmore, though.

3 years ago 3Who liked this?

Nozinan commented

@Victor I'm not ashamed to say I like Bowmore....just not the 12, 15 and 18. The Tempest, Devil's Cask and Laimrig are all excellent.

As for oysters? I have had them. I can take or leave them.

3 years ago 3Who liked this?

BlueNote commented

The first time I had raw oysters was in New Orleans at Felix's Oyster Bar. The bartender shucks and plates them on the half shell, mixes up a sauce of horseradish, ketchup and lemon juice and pours you a cold beer off the tap. All you can say after you finish the first half dozen is: do it again please.

3 years ago 3Who liked this?

RianC commented

@OdysseusUnbound - I remember you really liking the Laing sample @crickelwood sent. This sounds lovely. I get the feeling this particular Laing brother has the stronger contacts in the industry, hence the more premium barrel selections.

@Victor - I love all sea food and fresh, raw oysters are up there as a favourite but nothing can beat fresh crab meat! One day I hope to taste a fresh crab cake with meat pulled straight out the Chesapeake Bay!

@BlueNote - that sounds lovely! I like em raw, with lemon juice or a splash of Tabasco. A wee splash of Ardbeg 10 also works a treat!

3 years ago 3Who liked this?

BlueNote commented

@RianC @OdysseusUnbound If I was drinking this Rock Oyster, I’d be listening to some Rock Lobster by the legendary B-52s. If I wasn’t such a compu wank, I’d attach the YouTube video.

3 years ago 1Who liked this?

Megawatt commented

This sounds really good. Probably too expensive in Ontario.

2 years ago 1Who liked this?

OdysseusUnbound commented

@Megawatt the last time I saw it in Ontario, it was about $165….a bit steep imho.

2 years ago 0