Type: Single Malt
Score: 94 points
This is the first Octomore to carry a .4 designation…meaning that it was matured in virgin oak casks, along with ex-Bourbon casks. It is also older than most (but not all) Octomore bottlings at seven years old, and was distilled in 2008 using Scottish barley peated to a level of 167ppm. It is also the first release since Adam Hannett took over as head distiller and blender following Jim McEwan’s retirement in 2015.
The nose has a soft smokiness with notes of briny wet sand, driftwood, mild pipe tobacco, and a hint of caramel candy sweetness. The taste in one word: boom! Intense peat smoke, cinnamon spice, lemon zest, vanilla, dry leaves, barbecue sauce and pipe tobacco come together with a great balance and mouthfeel. The finish is long and smoky, but with a gentle balance and notes of citrus and brine underneath. Excellent! (March, 2016)