BR5 – Elements of Islay

BR5 - Elements of Islay 2

Final Dram at Salt Whisky bar. I’ve polished off enough naan to feed a small village. Twice. And cleaned my palate with enough water to water said village for a year.

Time for the last dram. And it’s a little bit of a rare find. BR5 – Elements of Islay is a special, independent bottling from Specialty Drinks Ltd. They only take what they want, it’s all only from Islay, there’s no chill filtering, no age statement, and it’s all cask strength.

They also sell T-shirts.

Looks like they’ve been reading our reviews. Time to send them some more.

Just kidding, they’ve just been reading Jim Murray’s erotica about Islay and decided to cash in. Good plan.

There’s an air of mystery to it, which I like. We’ve all had one or 12 of the limited special editions from Bruichladdich. Maybe another company can tease out yet another taste that the main OBs haven’t covered yet.

Or maybe my wife paid 8 pounds too much for a dram of this and I should have had the Glen Moray Chardonnay Cask… Time will tell.

BR5 - Elements of Islay 1

Price: N/A in Ontario

Region: Islay

Abv: 53.8%

Colour: Creamy yellow

Nose: Mango, iodine, smokey chocolate, pepper, orange, plantain, bannofee cake, grass

The amount of smoke isn’t too overpowering here. It’s really complex, with a lot of different fruit, caramel, smoke, and earth notes popping up.

I’m thinking I didn’t make a mistake here.

Taste: Cinnamon, nectarine, passion fruit, nutmeg, floral, High Park (Toronto) in Spring, plums

High Park is filled with Cherry Blossom flowers, and this has something in it that reminds me of those, mixed with general happiness, sunshine, fresh grass, and cool lake breezes. Can’t explain it better than that.

This is really, really complex.

Finish: Cola, dry, orange ginger cake, molasses, licorice, vanilla, Cadbury mini eggs

Dry and Sweet, all at the same time. I’m not the biggest fan of really dry anything, so I’m (me) not loving it as much as I should.

That said, it’s no dud, and the finish is quite nice. If you like a dry finish, it’s for you.

Conclusion: What can I say? It’s amazingly complex, set off a memory for me, was multi-dimensional, and beyond a personal dislike for dry drinks (which is only minor), this is amazing, and you should buy a bottle or 3 if you have the chance.


Scotch review #288, Islay review #66, Whisky network review #426

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