About this blog:

This blog will feature tasting notes, reviews, distillery visits and whisky news with focus mainly on Scottish single malts. This will sometimes be accompanied by politically incorrect (whisky) opinions. You have now been warned! :-)
The views expressed here are entirely my own, unless otherwise stated.

Monday, 23 March 2015


This year, Kilchoman Distillery on Islay, celebrates its 10th birthday.

This, of course, is celebrated with a big birthday bash on the distillery's Open-Day during this years Feis Ile - the annual festival of music and malt, held each year at the end of May... with that said, I already hear you asking when and where you can buy a 10 year old release from them... Well, bottom line is 'you can't' and you probably won't be able to this year either... and the reason is pure and simple - available stock!

Starting out small like most do and to generate a cash flow, Kilchoman did what many other distillers do during their start-up phase - they sell casks to people (or rather 'sold', as they don't do private cask sales any more)... and as soon as they have enough old stock to call whisky they have also put some of that to market. They even put some of their spirit up for sale too around 2008 both as minis and full bottles to generate some return on their investment. All this, of course, has resulted in limited stock from the early years being available today - and this is probably the main reason why you won't see a 10 year old bottling from Kilchoman this year...

We've seen quite a lot of bottlings from Kilchoman already and some have better than others to say the least...
It's young whisky and sometimes it can carry some very undesirable notes. E.g. some of the 5 year old they're released have been really good, while still showing its youthful vigor and the Loch Gorm sherry editions have been very good too.

Last year, Kilchoman released a 3 year old bottling matured in ex-port casks for which was received very well most places.
I've looked very much forward to trying this for a while now, since I think Port maturation, besides from the obvious sherry maturation, is one of the best wine types to go with whisky maturation... so is it any good?

The Kilchoman Visitor's Book ready for signing, May 7th 2011 © The Malt Desk

Kilchoman Port Cask 2011/2014, 55%, ex-ruby port casks, 6000 bottles, Distillery bottling

Colour is dark red/mahogany

Young spirit and peat, almost sickly in style - not appealing at all to me. Some rhubarb and synthetic strawberry struggles to make its way through the peat.

Sour buttermilk, sick, rotten veggies, a seaweed and peat mix that just off-putting to me - 2 sips and that was it for me! yuck! 

Kilchoman snake oil, anyone? :-O

That said, I've had both the Kilchoman New Spirit and 3 year old bottlings that was very drinkable, but IMO this just doesn't work at all and is some of the worst stuff I've had in quite a while! A big Kilchoman dud, this one !

I'll leave this to those that love this style - IMO, this just doesn't work and, putting it mildly, it wasn't a hit with the 60 people I presented it for this past weekend either. 


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