Hot damn, that’s fantastic! I have no real idea if it’s down to the quality of the sherry casks, but I’d believe it. There’s so much depth and complexity, with that beautifully intense mix of sweet, spice, salt, smoke, and nuts. It’s almost Longrow-like at times. Not to mention those crazy petrichor and fenugreek notes. Easily the best peated Caol Ila I’ve ever had.
Nose: Warmly spiced. Lots of baking spices, as well as more exotic notes of lemongrass and thai basil. Sweet fruit notes of mango, plums, and baked apples. Some slightly tart fruit too, with some fresh ruby grapefruit and granadilla. Nutty, toasted peat smoke. Beef jerky, smoked sausage, pork broth, and burnt pretzels, as well as a burning paraffin tea light. Salty too, something like an old sharp cheddar. Some sweet barley and maple fudge. A soft hint of elderflower sits underneath, as well as a shockingly clear note of petrichor.
Palate:Medium-thick texture. Creamy fruit and vanilla up front, with a hit of yeast. Big dry, nutty, savoury smoke on the development, with a wave of dried wood and seaside. Tide pools, smoked fish. The sweetness does punch through in the middle, though: Ripe peaches, plums, craisins, vanilla, and soft caramels. Through the development comes dried meat, roasted peanuts, and a strong flavour of dried fenugreek leaves. On the back end there’s rich, slightly acidic dark chocolate, aged balsamic, and more petrichor.
Finish: Long and smoky. Salty plums, blueberries, orange, macerated strawberries, barley sugar, crisp bacon, and wood-fired sauna deep in the boreal forest. Vanilla and toasted coconut. More of that sharp cheddar. Extra-dark chocolate. Sticky crystallized honey.