2009 Caol Ila "Old Malt Cask" 6 Year Old Single Sherry Barrel Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) (Previously $50) SKU #1293762


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Tasting Notes

While the market for mature casks of single malt Islay whisky has dried up over the last year, there are a number of value barrels like this 6 year sherry hogshead release from Old Malt Cask that emphasizes the youthful fruit and smoke of the famed island stalwart rather than richness of age. The refill sherry hogshead accents the inherent roundness of Caol Ila quite splendidly and at 100 proof there's enough potency to push the peat and the salt through all that creaminess. Those looking for a concentrated and unique single barrel experience will be pleased by how different the 6 year tastes next to the standard 12 year edition, but loyalists to Caol Ila will recognize instantly its trademark character of fruit and smoke.

Staff Reviews

  • Jeffrey Jones
    By: Jeffrey Jones
    K&L Staff Member
    Young Coal Ila always seen to be expressive and lively and this bottling is no exception. In the nose there is smoke with a very subtle fruit undertone. In the mouth there are fruit, malt, salt and smoke flavors. The sherry influence is very light providing a kiss of fruit. A nice long finish where the salt flavors show completes the package.
  • Andrew Stevens
    By: Andrew Stevens
    K&L Staff Member
    Young Caol Ila always delivers exactly what one thinks it will, and that is no mean feat. Iodine and peat with some subdued floral notes indicate with no uncertainty that this is a young Islay and not just from anywhere. Sharp, almost aggressive peat and iodine with bright young fruit and seaweed notes are all layered in this with a spice that rises like the tide toward the finish. In my book nothing screams young Islay to me in the same way young Caol Ila does, and for those who know there is simply no substitute.
  • Andrew Whiteley
    By: Andrew Whiteley
    K&L Staff Member
    Big and young Caol Ila. Salty and herbal - like dried Nori- this young buck is full of iodine, cooked and candied apples, smoky, and a little dusty. For all of the grace that ancient smoky whisky can offer, there is definitely something to be said for the brash and spunky young smoke of a great malt like Caol Ila. It's a clean and bright smoke and feels full of life and earth.
  • David Driscoll
    By: David Driscoll
    K&L Staff Member
    The nose on this young Caol Ila is absolutely haunting, eminating with seaweed, smoke, and freshly-cut peat, all bolstered by the fruit-forward malty character that I typically associate with the Island distillery. For those of you who swear by Johnnie Walker Black, this is the flavor that binds that whisky together. Caol Ila is the backbone to that whisky's core. Here, however, it's allowed to shine in an expression that's just old enough to showcase complexity, but also young enough to shine a spotlight on the best parts of youth. The smoke is bright, high-toned, and sultry. The sherry turns the sweet malt into a toasted almond note on the finish. The peat is clean and fragrant, rather than tired or marred by oak. This is a lovely whisky and it's one that's just as appropriate for spring as it is winter, in my opinion.


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