Caol Ila 1983

Overall rating
Whiskybase ID
Single Malt
Distillery Bottling
Bottling serie
Diageo Special Releases 2014
Stated Age
30 years old
Refill American & European Oak
Number of bottles
55.1 % Vol.
700 ml 750 ml
Bottle code
L4259DQ0000 50078995
Added on
21 Sep 2014 11:45 am by GLEN MAUR
Cask Strength

Average value

€ 794.18

158 × in wishlist

355 × member ratings

535 × in collection

Whisky Reviews for Caol Ila 1983

75 users have left a review for this whisky and scored it an average of 91.59 points

  1. Slàinte Mhath scored this whisky 95 points Super Administrator

    Oh. My. God. On our whisky journey, there eventually comes a moment where we instantly realize: this is it. The one Single Malt we have always been looking for. Caol Ila 30 is the crown of the distillery's OB (bottle no. 0181, 55.1% ABV). Smoldering bonfire smoke, zesty citrus fruits and notes of an old, earthy salt cellar enchant the nose. On the palate, the sweet and sour arrival migrates towards vegetal peatiness with well-balanced, mildly bitter wood spices. And the finish? Excellent. Intense, aromatic and slowly abating. Dare I say perfect? Slàinte!

    RATING: 5.0/5.0 stars ≙ 95 pts → PERFECT
    • Nose
      94 94
    • Taste
      94 94
    • Finish
      96 96

  2. markjedi1 scored this whisky 96 points Connoisseur

    I get a bit homesick, tasting this. I wanna go bck to Islay. Wouldn’t you? This Caol Ila is simply perfect. Thanks for the huge sample, Jan!
    • Nose
      Thanks to the nose I am immediately thrown back to Port Askaig, where I was looking for the ideal spot to take a nice picture of this distillery. The scent of the bay with its salty breeze, the threat of rain in the air, soft peat, creamy vanilla and some mildly burnt sugars. All of this upholstered with dark fruit and a rich, sweet smokiness. Leave it to breathe for a few moments and it becomes nicely waxy. A bonfire on the beach, aromatic oils, some lemon juice in the background, as well as some apricots and pineapple. But also rusted saws and wood shavings. The shed of a furniture maker. Ginger and liquorice. Delicate and enchanting!
    • Taste
      As delicate as the nose is, so sturdy is the taste. Powerful, smoky, sweet and very spicy on citrus fruit (both lemon, lime and oranges), honey and marzipan, followed by sea weeds, sweet butter, dried garden herbs, crème brûlée with a salty edge that leaves no doubt about the fact that we are indeed on Islay. Midpalate the fruit turns somewhat tropical (banana, mango, pineapple), while creamy oak gives it a lovely bitterness. The complexity of this malt knows no boundaries. 
    • Finish
      The finish is wonderfully long, maritime and offers a new surge of lime juice and salt smoke, but the peat has the final say.

  3. hs305 scored this whisky 93 points Connoisseur

    [May, 2017] I had this dram during the First Annual Caol Ila Feis Ile Dinner (yes, this was the official name of it!) at the Ballygrant's Inn. And I did it head-to-head versus the 30-years old (WB id 58218).

    Colour: Both have the same colour of old gold (yes, Diageo uses caramel to fix it that way). The texture of the 25y shows some fast fat legs and late sticky tears. The 30y shows early but very small tears and some late slow legs and fat tears.

    Nose: The 25y offers this adorable sweet and strong phenolic profile with maritime aromas that I adore, one to sniff for hours. The nose of the 30y is more subtle but on the same profile. Hard to say which one is better - the 30y is more complex and delicate while the 25y is more powerful and impressive. Finally I opt for the 30y.

    Mouthfeel: The 30y instantly coats the whole of the mouth with a slightly peppery feeling but without any distracting (bitter or drying) moments. That is really good! Surprisingly the 25y is smoother than the 30y on the mouthfeel but at least as much coating.

    Taste: A very mellow and complex sweet-peaty-phenolic-maritime profile on the 25y that is multi-layered, really excellent. The 30y counters this with more punchiness (surprisingly) and a greater complexity of flavours adding more spicy and malty aromas to it than the 25y. But again I like the 25y a little better (on a very high level).

    Finish: Both are very long with the 30y vanishing in several waves without any distracting notes. Close to perfection it is (remember Yota)! The 25y finishes a little shorter (just long, not very long...), but again without any flaws or off-notes. This round wins the 30y year old.

    Water is not needed on both (it does not really harm and smoothen the drams even further, but it takes away some power, too). I am really blown away by the high quality of both drams, the only flaw is the drinker-unfriendly price tag choosen by Diageo for the 30 year old. I am willing to pay as much as 250 Euro for the 30 year old - but not a single Cent more!
    • Nose
      93 93
    • Taste
      92 92
    • Finish
      93 93

  4. wisekycourse scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    Wet and dry peat
    Vanilla, roasted, velvety, a vegetal and earthy side
    Mouth :
    On the peppery spices first
    Then the earthy, organic peat, soggy barn hay
    Camphor, zan, it's black, velvety like on frangipane cream, toasted sweet almonds in return with
    The fruits are well on the cooked and slightly burnt lemon, the peat disappears as and when
    Subtle length, swirling scents on lime and its zest, on malt and ovomaltine with cocoa and roast, return of leather and dry glue;
    the very vegetal camphorated vanilla cream and the lemon remain for a long time in the mouth, on the palate and in the glass!

  5. Archer scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    A great old Caol Ila, who does not punch one's age with tart wood notes on the tongue. Fantastic balance.
    • Nose
      93 93
      Very light, almost subtle smoke that flows out of the glass. And then oak - oak that you can really smell that you think you can touch with your hands. The nose has an enormous substance, the individual components of which reveal themselves only slowly, so close do they hang on each other, are they interwoven. Ripe red apples appear, but also dried fruits such as raisins and figs. Seasoning is not so much to make out, at least not one that stands out from the oak. The smoke from the beginning passes quickly, then "only" is still fruit, honey and oak.
    • Taste
      92 92
      As in the nose: very fine smoke, oak, notes of ripe red apples and grapes. Gorgeous sweet with popcorn, honey, lots of vanilla, caramel sweets. Over time, it seems that tropical fruits are joining the apples. The oak is a gallant companion and leaves the other flavors enough space for development. Over time, pepper interferes, as does nutmeg.
    • Finish
      92 92
      Long, fruit sweet, oaky spicy and just a touch dry. Pepper and nutmeg.

  6. lachaineduwhisky did not rate this whisky Expert Senior

    • Nose
      Ripe fruit (melon). A vegetal note that I can not understand: is it peat? He wakes up slowly. Lemon and lime candied. It takes baker's accents, becomes more and more caressing, but also intense, lively and dynamic. Fresh fruits, such as pear, emerge in a sweet / salty atmosphere.
      With a little water, it is the vanilla that expresses itself, as well as the fruits, the herbs of Provence. More roundness.
    • Taste
      Peat very weak. It's juicy, melted, delicate but also spicy: the whole range goes on.
      With water, fresher, but also more creamy. Spices that twirl.
    • Finish
      Velvety, spicy, elegant, melted.

      Enthusiasm 4/5

      Whisky n ° 1897

  7. ColdAesthetics scored this whisky 95 points Connoisseur

    Dream fabric right there! That's why I love Caol Ila and here everything has come together in elegant yet full-bodied perfection ... Now the whole please for max. 200 euros. : ')
    • Nose
      Fantastic, very dense and hard, fresh tar, butter biscuit, fine sea salt diluted with water, banana jellies, freshly roasted marshmallows, lightly toasted bread, salt and pepper, rosemary, lavender, Brennesel, later incense, licorice, after a while more sweet notes come , dried apricots, maple syrup, banana syrup, ancient bog lies behind it
    • Taste
      Wonderful honey as I rarely had it with noble herbs, lavender, rosemary, fennel, caraway, white and black pepper slightly, nutmeg, licorice, burnt toast, burnt butter, salted caramels, fantastically balanced with the honey, salt and herbs, intense and but perfectly drinkable at the 55.1%, old leather, slightly dry algae, dried grapefruit, fruit kernels, Earl Gray, bitter chocolate in between small rasps, cinnamon, banana milkshake, some pineapple, kiwi, moist tobacco, green apple, incense and some rose water
    • Finish
      Drying, book spine, old tobacco box, bananas with peel, apricots with kernels, rosemary and fennel, some nutmeg, dark chocolate, clear tannins, long and warm, very elegant

  8. peatbogger scored this whisky 94 points Specialist

    A wonderful sample from Slàinte Mhath.
    Spent almost 30 minutes just nosing.
    The finish is exceptionally lipsmacking.
    • Nose
      92 92
      First off after pouring there is light smoke with a twist of peat to it.
      Not young agressive peat, but rather dignified in it's presence. Not sure if this diminish over time, or if it just was the plethora of other aromas that made me push it to the back of my mind.
      You can tell there is some age to it.
      Every time I put my nose in it I seemed to pick up something new. Just to have a hard time picking it up again.
      There's apples, there's lemon. There's salt, there's pure soil. There's leather and there's wood.
      One note I managed to find the sweet spot to detect was that of "Romeo y Julieta" cigar wrapper.
      One of my favourit cigar brands, mild but full of flavour.
      Sofisticated complex is what it is.
    • Taste
      94 94
      Arrives in a cloud of smoke.
      A blast of salty liqorice and asphalt.
      Going into a citric fruityness.
      Build up of peppery spice with a dry ash note.
      Neat it has just the right punch for its richness.
    • Finish
      97 97
      Definetely long. Spicy warmth clinging for some time.
      Most prominent to me is salty hickory smoked bacon with a sweet dark berry jam.

  9. Horror_Vacui scored this whisky 92 points Expert Senior

    For me, the spearhead on Caol Ila bottlings. As much as Diageo is suspended from the UBs in the Core Range, so much do they show that they are capable of satisfying the Malthead. And how! The malt is complex and versatile, but not too restless in the mouth and nose. The nose is absolutely great and invites you to spend hours smelling. For me, Caol Ila in the age group often build in the mouth - but this bottling holds the level. For me this best bottling after the renovation I was allowed to taste so far. I would like it more often if there was no price tag with "500" on it.
    • Nose
      Dozens of flavors pour out of the glass immediately after pouring in. The charcoal grill on which a few coals smolder from noon, Pu-erh tea almost only in China (the extremely strong-earthy), the smell from the oven after you Made apple chips. The smell of freshly cut and rolled tobacco leaves (as in the cigar stand on the Aquavitae and Whisky Fair Rhine-Ruhr). Add to that the scent of a berry smoothie made from fresh fruit (bramble, raspberry and blueberry). After some time and rest in the glass, there is a touch of maritime notes - damp dew that someone left lying on the pier in front of the distillery. Even more time in the glass still brings the smells of a cold-pressed olive oil from green olives, mixed with a little walnut oil and a splash of citrus (lime). A my / mü leather and blackberry flavors float in the background.
    • Taste
      without water he is a little too peppery-spicy. But you can already guess where the journey goes. A sourish (citrus, red currant, Granny Smith!) And slightly dry feeling immediately occupy the whole mouth. A few drops of water ... Holla, the nose is smokier immediately, and the apple chips come through full broadside. Even with a little water, it remains peppery when it starts, like red Kampot pepper. Immediately he never full-bodied and slightly oily the mouth completely. Many fruits, especially red and green apples, a piece of mango, half a fresh Pithaya, a spoon of berry smoothie from the nose. But also spicy oak flashes, framed by bright meadow honey and a splash of citrus fruit, here rather pink grapefruit. Chewing tobacco and leather also here, but very discreet, even walnut oil is there. And all the time everything is framed by a nice, not too dense smoke flavor.
    • Finish
      Long, very very long. In the beginning, it is fruity and bitter over time. The mouth becomes dry.

  10. DenisLeonov scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    Balance (23) Madly delicious Kuila ... tender and affectionate ... I'm in love (92)
    • Nose
      The fragrance is delicate ... I have not tried such Kuil yet ... herbaceous and fruity ... ... ashes and smoke ... lemon (lemon candy) ... paper ... (23)
    • Taste
      The taste is salty, smoky ... even smoked ... spices and fruits in creamy glaze ... wax (23)
    • Finish
      Finish gentle ... fruit ... pepper ... cream and ashes ... wax and lemon peel ... salted caramel ... oak ... freshness (23)


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