I originally planned on buying multiple bottles of Kilchoman while in Scotland. As the youngest of the Islay batch, I was amazed by the Machir Bay when I had it, and wanted more.
Then I hit 3 different whisky shops, blew through my budget, and found out that Kilchoman has been gaining quite a bit of popularity among everyone. As such, my plans for a bottle have been stymied a tad, though there’s still London.
The great guys at Cadenheads recommended a nice bar that was “Doesn’t look too good on the outside, it’s looks good inside” and that the food was great. Kilderkin is a great bar, the food is great, and the whisky selection is truly unique. And as a Canadian who is used to 4, seeing 50 single malts or so that you’ve never seen is a little intimidating.
I decided to make up for not finding a Kilchoman special release by picking up a dram of Kilchoman Single Bourbon Cask 5 year old. There was only 240 bottles made of this, and it was non-chill filtered and no colour added. Let’s see if my search is in vain.
Price: N/A in Ontario
Colour: 10k gold
Nose: Peat, vanilla, autumn, fall spices, Mexican hot chocolate, BBQ, treacle, freshly fallen oak, pear smoke
Very complex, with the peat nicely interplaying throughout the different flavours like it took E and danced all night. If you don’t like Peat or Smoke, I’d pass on this one. Brilliant.
Taste: Peat moss, iodine, oak, caramel, burn, earthworms, bacon, dark chocolate, vanilla, passion fruit, mango
At first it’s a lot like the Machir Bay in the meat/smoke combo and that ever present taste of earthworms. Then it opens up with more fruit as time passes, the peat never really disappearing, and the bacon stays as well. Like a good buffet, you still grab bacon each time.
Finish: Chocolate, vanilla pudding, campfire, bacon, light haggis, turnip, maple, mushroom,
Long, long finish on this, with the right amount of earthiness and sweetness. Also, I think there’s some cub scouts in here, as it ends in a campfire.
Wait, that makes me sound like a pedophile, scratch that.
Conclusion: Buy this bottle, or a dram, regardless of the price, no matter what if you have the chance, unless you don’t like peat. It’s that good, start to finish. The only thing I can say (and this is an immense nit pick) is I wish there was a little bit more fruit in the finish. Seriously, that would have made it perfect. I cannot wait until Kilchoman starts making 10 year old single malt. It will be amazing.
Scotch review #79, Islay review #26, Whisky Network review #104