Another absolute banger from Bruichladdich. I know I said it was “surprisingly” sweet, but I’ve come to expect and really enjoy that level of sweetness from x.1 Octomore. This one sets itself apart by having this delightfully creamy, buttery, slightly custardy flavour, which is just delicious. It also has plenty of those malty notes I love so much in Bruichladdich products. It’s also shockingly easy to drink, despite crazy complexity. I could sip this all day, every day. I’m excited to see if 9.3 can top it.
Nose: Bold, peaty and surprisingly sweet. Campfire embers, seaweed, and lots of kalamata olives. Slightly medicinal, with some tangy Bruichladdich funk. The peat has a vegetal aspect as well - artichoke dipped in melted butter? That’s a new one. Rich barley, vanilla, and brown sugar. Milk chocolate, hazelnuts, lemongrass, and dates. The clean earthiness of smoked black tea. Grilled teriyaki-glazed meat. Toasted French bread.
More Bruichladdich-y as time passes: flowers, ginger, pear, white cherry, citrus, and funk.
Palate: Medium-oily texture. Peppery arrival, with honey, more toasted French bread, yeast, and stonefruit. Sweet malt in the middle, developing to creamy peat, salt, iodine, fresh leather, cedar boughs, and earth. A bit of hard cheese in there, as well as maybe a bit of sweet Italian sausage (sage). Big barbequed meat, turning into honey and flowers. Rounds off back into salted caramel and chocolate-covered macadamia nuts.
A drop of water encrusted everything with maple sugar.
Finish: Lots of retronasal herbs and earth going on. Peat smoke, seaweed, and smoked brisket. Nutty toasted cream and browned butter. It gets a little floral now, with roses and fragrant cedar. Some anise, cardamom, and sage. Definitely Italian sausage. A bit of cinnamon too, maybe even some sugared raisins. Some dried mango, maybe. Espresso-roast coffee. More black tea, getting Darjeeling-y.