News flash: Bruichladdich to relaunch Port Charlotte single malt whisky

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The Bruichladdich distillery is set to relaunch Port Charlotte, which is the Islay distillery’s heavily peated single malt whisky.

Continue reading “News flash: Bruichladdich to relaunch Port Charlotte single malt whisky”

Bruichladdich’s “The Three Tens”: The Laddie 10 year old, Port Charlotte 10 year old and Octomore 10 year old

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Bruichladdich have released a new trio of whiskies they call ‘The Three Tens’ – three ten year old malts, an unpeated Bruichladdich, a peated Port Charlotte and a heavily peated Octomore.  In this post, I review all three whiskies.  Continue reading “Bruichladdich’s “The Three Tens”: The Laddie 10 year old, Port Charlotte 10 year old and Octomore 10 year old”

Port Charlotte Islay Barley 2008

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Recommended use: Enjoy neat

Malt Mileage Rating: stars 4.5

Type: Single malt whisky 

Origin: Islay, Scotland 

ABV: 50%

Price: £65

Cask No: 14/098-35

Distilled: 12/2008 

Drawn: 30/9/2014

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Bruichladdich Octomore 7.4 Virgin Oak

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Recommended use: Serve neat/ with a dash of water

Malt Mileage Rating: stars 4.5

Type: Scotch single malt whisky

Origin: Islay, Scotland

ABV: 61.2%

Price: N/A

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How is whisky made and where does its flavour come from? Distilling and Maturing whisky

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Whisky is defined in the Oxford Dictionary as ‘[a] spirit distilled from malted grain, especially barley or rye. There is more to it than that, of course. Making whisky is complex. Whisky is not “made” into a finished product, it takes time. The spirit that becomes “whisky” is clear as water when it is distilled. To become whisky, this clear liquid (which is called “new make”) needs to mature in oak. This post will show you how this “new make” is distilled, and then matured into whisky. It will explain how different types of whisky get their distinct flavours, and from where. 

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Bruichladdich Octomore 7.3 Islay Barley

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Recommended use: Serve with a splash of spring water 

Rating: stars 5

Recommendation: Buy it

Type: Single malt

Origin: Islay, Scotland

ABV: 63.0%

User rating for Octomore 7.3 Islay Barley (VOTE HERE): 

Bruichladdich Octomore 7.3 is a heavily peated single malt whisky that boasts a PPM of 169. Having been distilled from a wash that is made from barley grown on the Isle of Islay in Scotland, and then matured in American oak barrels by the sea on Islay, I am expecting a salty jab in the face and a knockout blow of peat from this whisky. What I found, as the below tasting notes show, was that this whisky is not dominated by salt and peat; rather, the salt and peat buoys flavours from the American oak and malt – it is complex, balanced, and yet seriously ferocious.  

Nose:

Peat smoke, coastal notes, rubber gloves dusted with talc, powered vanilla and chocolate, apple, peach, green pineapple, mars bar, fudge, caramels and denser milk chocolate emerge with walnuts, leather and freshly varnished pine with white chalk. 

Taste:  

Served neat at an alcohol by volume of 63.0%, the ethanol snaps at the palate like grandpa’s perfectly executed moonshine. Then the palate adjusts. It is astringent, and as the vapours evapourate off the palate like a hot steam, find sea salt, heavy peat, maritime notes, toffee apple, caramel, honey, fresh apricot, cigar tobacco and wood tannins. 

Finish:

Curiously, vanilla cupcakes emerge on the finish with heavier notes of salt than on the entry and a twist of minerality. There is plenty of peat smoke and underlying smoked notes, very Russian Caravan and lapsang souchong, with candied ginger and a lingering metallic taste and the faint glow of eucalyptus.  

Bottom line:

Buy it! Bruichladdich Octomore Edition 7.3 is a peaty sea monster, a Godzilla of a dram, bashing its way out of coastal waters to bombard the palate with all the unbridled anger you would expect of a youthful Islay malt – peat, sea spray, smoke – but with the calming sweetness of American oak.