Whiskybase

Caol Ila 25-year-old

Overall rating
88.93/100
votes
152
Whiskybase ID
WB80803
Category
Single Malt
Distillery
Bottler
Distillery Bottling
Bottled
19.01.2016
Stated Age
25 years old
Strength
43.0 % Vol.
Size
700 ml
Bottle code
L6019CM000
Barcode
5000281027098
Added on
07 apr 2016 6:45 pm by Norbs
ColoredChillfiltered

Average value

€ 174.96

22 × in wishlist

152 × member ratings

570 × in collection

Whisky Reviews for Caol Ila 25-year-old

18 users have left a review for this whisky and scored it an average of 88.93 points

  1. hs305 scored this whisky 90 points Connoisseur

    [July, 2017] Today I found the 2013 edition for 135 Euro at my local dealer and now I can do my long-planned triple head-to-head tasting of the three latest batches of the 25 year old Caol Ila finally: The 2012 (WB id 81151, bottled January, 20th) versus the 2013 (WB id 65022, bottled November, 25th) versus the 2016 (WB id 80803, bottled January, 19th).

    Colour: The 2012 and the 2016 have the same colour of old gold (of course, as they still use caramel to achieve this) while the 2013 is three shades darker at amontillad. The texture of all three drams is very similar with some early slow legs and many late fat and sticky tears.

    Nose: The 2012 offers a rich and complex fruity and phenolic nose with some OBFs (lacquer paint) right from the beginning. The 2013 is quite comparable with phenols and some OBFs too beside the nice sugary and wooden aromas. Contrary to this the 2016's nose is rather shy on mainly peaty and herbal aromas that take quite a while to enfold. No OBFs here. After adding some water the 2016 opens up and shows now the yearned OBFs, finally. The 2012 and 2013 are significantly better on this dimension when neat and still slightly better with water. I like the 2013 best here.

    Mouthfeel: The 2016 arrives warming and coating on the palate with no distracting moments, really nice. Same with the other two but the 2012 is a little astringent (tannins). Here I like the 2016 best closely followed by the 2013.

    Taste: The 2012 is nicely layered on sweet (honey and different sugars), peaty and spicy (peppers, nutmegs, salt) flavours all in perfect harmony. The 2013 is again comparable with some additional chocolatey flavours. Obviously they added some (more) sherry casks to this batch (hence the darker colour). The 2016 is somewhat shy, less sweeter and more phenolic. But complex and layered too, after some chewing it shows a lot of nice additional aromas (floral, herbal, some fruits). All are quite different on the palate but each is great in its own way. Finally I like the 2016 slightly better and the other two are a draw.

    Finish: All are very long and vanish slowly in waves. No one shows any bitter or drying moments with the 2012 being sweeter and more spicy (peppery). The 2013 is sweet but less spicy and more chocolatey again. The 2016 finish is more complex than the other two on herbs and autumn floral notes. Here it is a draw between the 2012 and 2016 while the 2013 is slightly weaker (nevertheless on a high level).

    The 2016 is an excellent swimmer and improves significantly on some water, especially in the nose. On the 2012 and 2013 water is not needed but does no harm either (it releases more fruits in the nose) - so I advice to try it both ways.

    These are three great drams at a still very reasonable price (compare the 135-150 Euro here to the price of a 25 year old Lagavulin that - by the way - I scored with 89 resp. 84 points only). As a drinker I prefer any of these Caol Ila over any of the same aged Lagavulin. These Caol Ila are (still) a good deal to buy, given you like this profile...
    • Nose
      89 89
    • Taste
      90 90
    • Finish
      90 90

  2. Saftkenner scored this whisky 88 points Expert Senior

    Very elegant whisky with a proud age at a very fair price. If it had 46%, I would be willing to put € 50 more on the table without blinking an eyelid.
    • Nose
      87 87
      The age is directly noticeable. Very elegant and delicate smoky note, which already lets some fruit aromas through. Leather, damp wood, vanilla, lemon, distant sea breezes, orange, cinnamon, wood spice.
    • Taste
      88 88
      Amazingly strong for 43%, also very oily and stimulates saliva. The smoke has turned into more complex aromas over the years and, like the nose, is only slightly noticeable. Cigar tobacco, old leather, oak seasoning, vanilla stick, strong honey sweetness, antique wardrobe, orange and cinnamon.
    • Finish
      88 88
      Long finish. A pleasant sweetness, orange juice with honey and some white ash, remains in the mouth and throat. In the following minutes you can still fish oily drops from all corners of the mouth with the tongue. That is fun!

  3. Menko scored this whisky 91 points Expert Senior

    This is probably one of the most underrated whiskys currently for sale. Compared to the Coal Ila 18 the 25 is deeper, more intens and multi layered. Give it some time in the glass to breathe and take your time to enjoy it, for it is one of the few pearls that are not yet overpriced.

  4. Tangtang_WhiskyYoda scored this whisky 89 points Connoisseur

    very tasty standard. Very complex and wonderfully integrated aromas. Extremely tasty. Great malt.
    • Nose
      Smoky maritime, slightly salty, yet sweet and fruity, very aromatic smoke, herbs. Very nice nose. The smoke is well integrated.
    • Taste
      Smoky sweet, fruity, malty, nutty, spicy, oak comes later. Becoming oily and wonderfully complex
    • Finish
      Smoky sweet, spicy, some oak and malt, dark chocolate, a little bit tart and slightly oily, a little nutty, quite long and aromatic

  5. Likudi scored this whisky 90 points Shoplink Moderator

    • Nose
      90 90
    • Taste
      91 91
    • Finish
      90 90

  6. M134481 scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      Wood
      Oranges
      Citrus fruit
      Smoke
      Biscuit
      Bourbon
      Vanille
    • Taste
      Smoke
      Wood
      Bourbon
      Vanille
    • Finish
      Smoke
      Wood
      Bourbon
      Oranges
      Citrus fruit
      Vanille

  7. hs305 scored this whisky 90 points Connoisseur

    [June, 2017]  This Caol Ila requests a lot of time to fully enfold its beauty - so leave it open in the glass for at least 30 (thirty!) minutes before tasting this dram.  It really makes a huge difference!

  8. TheDAne scored this whisky 91 points Member Senior

    • Nose
      Initially quite subdued, with water more pronounced yet still subtle. Similar to classic 12 YO in style, but certainly older, more mature with darker wood flavor, spice, shoepolish, cedarwood, vanilla, purple flower notes of hyacint, lavender.
    • Taste
      full-flavored, rich yet very rounded and elegant. Old peat, slight metallic note, coastal notes of clam shells, salty foam, subtle woody flavors. Certainly a good balance between wood forward flavor from cask and spirit flavor. Soft yet sour and coastal salty, ashy, warm tar, soot. Bone dry. Would have liked it as Cask strenght.
    • Finish
      Powerful yet elegant finish of more ash, wood smoke, warm asphalt, which pleasantly lingers on the palate and ending in ashy aftertaste. The finish is notably longer and more complex than the 12 YO

  9. JoshNRW scored this whisky 90 points Expert Senior

    25 years, 43 percent, Islay. Can't that be "very good"?
    I like Caol Ila anyway thanks to the Lidl Ben Bracken bottlings (the 27 for less than 100 euros is a dream with about 89 points).
    But I might be a bit more biased on this whisky.

    The most whisky knowledgeable person I know loves this malt as a standard and as an all day dram. I am aware that you have to be able to treat yourself to such a malt on a regular basis and that it is not a whisky that can be taken for granted.

    But then it's worth it and the price is also very good for explorers.
    • Nose
      91 91
      Beautiful to smell in Blenders. It doesn't matter whether it's at Blenders or Glencairn.
      Lots of balanced and sweet peat, some smoke, a bit old and soft pear, a lot of the 25 years - especially the 25 years with the 43 percent with sufficient intensity - come across well. This sweet - smoky - and slightly sweet fruity kind is just super, super strong.

      The complexity and depth is limited (89 to 90), but the rest totally flashes you.
    • Taste
      90 90
      Slightly thinner than the full nose, then again sweet peat smoke, tofee, soft fruits of pear and wood. Much rounder with water and without corners.
    • Finish
      90 90
      89.5
      Almost long. Oily Holt and some wood remain. Thinner with water.

  10. Modly scored this whisky 90 points Member Senior

    • Nose
      90 90
    • Taste
      89 89
    • Finish
      90 90

  11. Andytka3 scored this whisky 75 points Connoisseur

    1672) Caol Ila, 25YO (2016)
    • Nose
      N- Greet by Caol-ey kind of mollusks smoke, clay charcoal kiln built on oyster shells and chilled kelp washed up by nature sea. Pale mineral coastal wind trying to cast the shape, but only reaching the loose end with weakest hint. Drifts away comes the lonely dark 'pu-er' tea, underwhelm and unjust by the diluted strength for bottling this. (86/20)
    • Taste
      P- Faint whiff of surviving carbon ink, quick hostile away by the lifeless seasoned sherry sweets. What's is left behind? I asks the eclipsed 25. "Nothing", I hear my own whispering. (83/18)
    • Finish
      F- Routine like machine. But for a 25, this is much like a beached whale gasping for air to live. (85/19)

      B/B- 83/18 Barely acceptable if to imagine this is an entry range. Lame 25YO special release. Totally personal opinion, well, what do I know.

      Weighted Rate- 75pt Add more water for the money, never mind washed away the dignity. What's is left behind? I asks the candle in the wind.

  12. lucero scored this whisky 90 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      91 91
    • Taste
      89 89
    • Finish
      89 89

  13. Wolfe Tone scored this whisky 89 points Expert Senior

    Wonderfully complex, soft, sweet and smoky Caol Ila. Everything you get with the fabulous 18 years old, and then some more.

  14. Othorion scored this whisky 88 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      89 89
    • Finish
      88 88

  15. Fassstärke scored this whisky 88 points Expert Junior

    • Nose
      89 89
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      87 87

  16. Oldpultnie scored this whisky 90 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      90 90
    • Taste
      90 90
    • Finish
      91 91

  17. Oldpultnie scored this whisky 90 points Connoisseur

    A very good whisky for a reasonable price.
    • Nose
      Slightly medicinal with hints of smoke followed by sweet fruits.
    • Taste
      Floral, warming but not spicy or peppery. Rich and complex, fresh, sweet and a little salt.
    • Finish
      Long, sweet and a little bitterness at the end.

  18. Bram84 scored this whisky 88 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      89 89
    • Taste
      88 88
    • Finish
      88 88

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