From a bunch of 10 year old whiskies from one Islay distillery to a single 10 Year Old whisky but from another Islay distillery – Kilchoman.
In the last year we’ve seen a couple of single casks from Kilchoman, all boasting the 10 Year Old statement, and as time keeps passing by it will be less and less of a special occurrence (and we’ll soon see 11 year old releases). This time I’m checking out a 2007 10 Year Old Sherry Cask bottled for The Whisky Exchange. Cask 401/2007 was distilled in 14.11.2007, almost two years after distillery was opened, and was bottled 24.11.2017. Total of 599 bottles at 58.5% were produced from this Sherry Butt.
Kilchoman 2007 10 Year Old Single Sherry Cask (58.5%, TWE Exclusive, £125)
Nose: Soft ashy peat, big wave of smoke and thick sweet dried fruit, strong backbone of wood spices and tobacco, very strong cask influence, cherries and cherries juice, toffee, dates, and plastic, not sure if I like this. With a few drops of water: oh much better, spicier, plums, feels much more matured and coherent but now there’s also some burnt pungent garbage.
Palate: Wood, peat, smoked meat, licorice, sharp burnt wood smoke, oak spices, sweet sherries liquor. With water: spicier, fresher, cleaner and well defined fruitiness.
Finish: Long finish, lingering burnt feeling, cherries sweetness, peat, ashes, tobacco. With water: less burnt stuff (so it’s nicer).
Thoughts: Not sure what happened here. It has all ingredients for a big success: Matured peat (relatively for Kilchoman) and strong sherry cask influence, but it just didn’t work out for me. It is bursting with flavors but at the same time it’s missing balance and complexity. A few drops of water helps it immensely but frankly I expected more from a whisky of such pedigree…