Caol Ila Cask Strength

Caol Ila CS

Part Two of my adventures at Feather’s pub! For those of you who missed my first review yesterday, this past weekend I went to a local pub, called Feather’s, and they have a lot of Scotch…. which is kinda like saying that Michelin sells quite a few tires. They have over 400.

None the less, my first pick was Kilchoman Machir Bay. I chose it because I thought it would be an Islay with no peat (I was wrong). Thus my original plan of ordering a sweeter dram for dessert was lost, and I needed another Islay, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to properly review it.

Thus I chose Caol Ila Cask Strength, because go big or go home. I haven’t had a chance to try any Scotch by Caol Ila yet, so this was a real treat.

Price: N/A (Yet another dram not available at the LCBO)

Abv: 61.6%

Region: Islay

Colour: Bud Light

Nose: Light sea, lemon, smoke, lime, light cardamom, medicinal, cream

Are we sure this is from Scotland? Cause this smells like some of the best Mexican I’ve ever had.

This is a fascinating and complex Scotch. I’ve never really had a dram that had that “creamy” smell, and it almost has a Mexican cuisine mixture to it. It’s quite light for being Cask Strength. I’m a little confused what to think at this point

Taste: Smoke, lime, chipotle, bacon, smoked salmon, zucchini flower, brown sugar, honeydew mountain

Wow. No jokes, no possible other way to put this: I’ve never had a Scotch blast my taste buds with so many varying, distinct, amazing flavours all at once. This is amazing. It keeps evolving, and when I first tried it, I wasn’t prepared and had to start writing like a mad man. People may have stared. My wife may have laughed.

Finish: Medicine, sour cream, pepper, smoked beef loin, cocoa, smoke, rosemary

This changes into a bitter, medicinal finish that lightly lets you down from the flavour-o-rama that it brought you on. And when someone used to write that something had the taste of sour cream and medicine, I used to think “That doesn’t sound good at all.” Now I really see how that’s quite nice to finish on. The smoked beef loin is front and center, hogging the spot light and really nice. My only problem is how short the finish was, as I wanted this to last a LOT longer.

Conclusion: It’s like I started with some awesome Mexican food and finished with some great smoked beef loin. This is one of my top 5 Scotches of all time, and I am very, very sad that I can’t buy a bottle (until I head to Scotland). It wasn’t harsh at all with the High Cask strength, and even my buddy who hadn’t had a Cask Strength Scotch before this day (I gave him some Macallan CS before going out) didn’t need to add any water when he tried it.

So to sum up: Definitely recommend others try this one, it’s great.


Scotch review #15, Islay review #5, Whisky Network review #21

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