An Octomore with 20% Virgin Oak and 80% First Fill Bourbon barrel maturation and a smoke content of 170 ppm, that makes you curious and with its dark golden color in the glass it is waiting to be tasted.
Mhhhh wonderful! In the nose, of course, I immediately have the smokiness, which does not dominate everything and leaves no room for other flavors. On the contrary, the smoke combines wonderfully with the great vanilla, the caramel notes and the very subtle citrus notes, which do not play a major role. I have to think of custard and caramel candies and just like with these two delicacies, the whisky also looks very sweet, creamy and soft. The alcohol content of 58.7% is well integrated, there is hardly anything in the nose here. For me, these three aromas are the clearly dominant notes and even if that is not very complex and complex, the scent is beguiling! Sticky banana bread is sprinkled with pepper and a very small pinch of cinnamon. The smoke is very aromatic, I have to think of an almost burned-out campfire on a cold, windy, cloudy day on the Scottish coast.
The whisky shows its strength in the mouth. Incredibly intense with a slight chilli on the tongue that quickly turns into peppery. The smoke takes up the entire mouth, slightly salty notes intensify the thought of the almost burnt-down campfire on the Scottish coast. Tannins of coffee, roasted aromas of slightly burnt bread crust and leather ensure a very slight dryness. In addition to the tart notes, the caramel is noticeable and vanilla resonates. I dilute to about 54% because the alcohol content is a little too violent for me. The Octomore is still very powerful, the sharpness is still very present on the tongue, but not quite as extreme as before. But I don't want to dilute any further ... I'm a lover of somewhat strong whiskys. The sweetness with the strong smoke and the spicy sharpness and the tannins ... a great interplay of different flavors. I really like the Octomore so far.
The finish is long as expected with a lot of smoke, some salt and iodine, the pepper is still noticeable. In addition to the leather, tobacco also provides the tannins. Vanilla and caramel swing only in the background, are hardly perceptible to me as individual notes. A mineral mouthfeel gradually fades away.
Well what can I say? A great thing! The first-fill bourbon barrel did a great job here, the vanilla and caramel flavors harmonize wonderfully with the aromatic smoky note. Definitely one of the better octomores I've had the chance to try.
I give 89/100 points.