Thursday, December 25, 2014

Two Quick Mini Reviews - Caol Ila 18 and Glen Keith 1992, Signatory Vintage

Two short and sweet whisky reviews today - the new(ish) Caol Ila 18 and a Glen Keith 1992 21 YO Signatory Vintage. Both from small sample bottles bought from Whiskybase.

Caol Ila 18 Year Old (OB, 2014 release) 43%

Nose: Some mild peat at first sniff, soon followed by brine and, after a little more time, light wafts of fruit.

Palate: Very soft arrival - almost a smooth caress. Light smoke, mild peat, salt and sweetish citrus fruit. [I didn't try adding any water to this as I didn't think the combination of small sample size and low ABV warranted it.]

Finish: Reasonably long. It's gentle throughout the finish, but it never feels too soft nor particularly dilute, despite the low ABV. The brine/salt combination continues to the mildly bitter end.

Such a soft and easy going aged Caol Ila. But it's an absolute pleasure to drink - I could imagine drinking a lot of this, very easily. I like it a lot.

Glen Keith 1992, 21 Year Old, Signatory Vintage 57.5% (Bourbon Casks 120566 + 120569)

Nose: Slightly invasive and hot at first sniff, but underneath there's some buttery fruit and a hint of spice. Water makes things much fruitier, bringing out a whole range of fresh yellow fruits, while also levelling out the wood spice a fraction too.

Palate: Prickly hot, but again some lovely fresh stone fruit hovering below. With water the heat dissipates allowing the fruit to come to the fore. Honey and perhaps even a hint of cream now too.

Finish: Medium long. The fruit lingers for a moment, before it becomes a touch woody and astringent. Water makes it both fruitier and broader. It also becomes much less astringent with the fruit now stretching out across the now-longer finish.

Really good drink this, particularly with water. Such lovely fruit. I wish I had a bottle.

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