Review: Octomore 7.4

bruichladdich-octomore-7.1-virgin-oak-islay-whisky-webOctomore 7.4 – 61.2% abv

Info: Matured in virgin oak casks. Distilled 21/04/2008, making this 7 years old. 167 PPM.
Colour: Dark, rusty gold, red tints.
Nose: Bosh! Insanely good, really exciting stuff you can smell for ages. For those that have been lucky enough to have ever had Balcones goodies, there’s a definite parallel… rich virgin oak, smokiness, streaky fried bacon, bonfires and barley notes amongst many other smells.
Palate: Very thick oils which are really easy on your tongue considering the 61.2% volume of alcohol. Packed full of those virgin oak notes of smoked brushwood, barley and hints of tannin. After a while held on the tongue there’s kind of a cola cube sweet type of a note. It’s sweet, rich and moreish.
Finish: The finish is actually much more subtle and smooth than I expected, the whisky transitioning from your mouth to your stomach smoothly, gently, sweetly. Lasts for ages.
Water: Seems great without water to me. But adding a drop opens up the nose letting out a few more of those well known Bruichladdich Octomore type notes of engine oil and moss. It makes is slightly easier on your tongue due to lower alcohol, and that sweetens it up even more, although some of the great virgin notes are also lowered.
Thoughts: Wowsers, just when you think Octomore can’t get any better Bruichladdich keep tapping you up with new flavours. Octomore is the most smoked barley that Bruichladdich use, but when combined with the strong flavours of virgin oak casks it really gives an equally strong flavour, and when the two combine the resulting whisky is glorious. Unless, of course, you hate peat, in which case you might not like this very much.
Available: Bruichladdich website or Abbey Whisky. £150.

Thanks to Bruichladdich for the sample.

Octomore 7.4 Sample Bottle