Caol Ila Distillery Island of Islay Scotland Whisky from 100 to 200 euros

Caol Ila 14yo Four Corners of Scotland

Review of the limited edition for the reopening of the visitor centre

Origin: Isle of Islay (Scotland)
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Strength: 53%ABV
Ageing casks: Ex-Bourbon refill and freshly charred hogsheads
Chillfiltered: No
Added coloring: No
Owner: Diageo
Average price: € 170.00
Official website: www.malts.com
Vote: 86/100

The years between 2020 and 2022 saw the reopening, after extensive refurbishment, of the visitor centres of four of the distilleries in Diageo’s huge portfolio. These are not distilleries chosen at random, but those that make up the ‘four corners of Scotland’, whiskies considered representative of as many areas of the country.
Glenkinchie (Lowland), Cardhu (Speyside), Clynelish (Highlands) and finally Caol Ila (Islay) are in fact the heart of the well-known blended Johnnie Walker, with the tours of these distilleries entirely revised from the perspective of the Striding Man’s whisky production, which is beautifully displayed at the entrance to each of them.
Limited to 3,000 bottles available only at the distillery, cask strength, matured in refill and ‘freshly charred’ ex-bourbon hoghsheads, made to mark the reopening of the (beautiful) visitor centre in September 2022, the last of the four.

Tasting notes

The nose is pleasantly crisp and sylvan, evoking a night bonfire in a clearing with freshly gathered branches where resin burns together with pine needles. Nutmeg, star anise, marshmallows (toasted, of course), lemon zest, currants and pineapple tartlets accompany the evening, with a distinct iodine and medicinal vein in the background and a touch of brine. Pungent.
On the palate, the sweeter side takes a little revenge by expanding its presence and palette (pineapple, peach, crisp apple, butter, cereal biscuit) but it is still the smoky and medicinal side that dominates, always on the side of freshly cut wood with a mentholated hint. Barely hinted spices, with an almost sour milk background. Strength well present but centred.
Quite long finish of salt, extinguished bonfire, fruit compote, burnt pastry, vegetable notes.

A solid, well-constructed whisky, perhaps not particularly engaging but you cannot deny its good balance and personal, incisive traits. A good Caol Ila, not so good as to justify its price.

Reviews of Caol Ila whisky

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