Comparing Octomore 11.1 and 11.3 gives one of our finest lessons in stratospheric smoke and barley terroir. While both editions are malted to a Brobdingnagian 100+PPM reading, the differences in barley character from the respective growing region is ever present. Our Octomore Islay barley is grown each year by friend and farmer James Brown, on Octomore farm itself. It is harvested, malted and distilled separately, even from our other Islay barley harvests, in order to become a single field, single vintage single malt. Our Octomore Islay barley is grown each year by friend and farmer James Brown, on Octomore farm itself.
It is harvested, malted and distilled separately, even from our other Islay barley harvests, in order to become a single field, single vintage single malt. Situated just two miles from the distillery, this specific 2013 harvest was raised in Irene’s field, where only 28 acres were planted that year. Unlike its Scottish Mainland counterpart, this field is exposed to the climactic conditions and salt spray of wild Atlantic swells. The distinctive flavour and rarity of this barley is something truly special when combined with the clean ex-American whiskey cask maturation. Malted to 194 PPM. Distilled in 2014 from the 2013 harvest of 100% Octomore farm grown Concerto barley.
Full term maturation in first fill American whiskey casks from Jim Beam, Heaven Hill, Buffalo Trace and Jack Daniels. Matured entirely on Islay for five years. Bottled unchill-filtered and colouring free at the Bruichladdich distillery, 61.7%. Limited to 18.000 bottles.
Nose: Eight floral character on the nose, Summery and bright. The peat smoke is slow to rise initially but comes through with a light touch, clean and dry and very much in the background. Lovely light floral notes and sweet citrus, with honey and vanilla really holding everything together.
Taste: Texturally this dram has a fantastic presence on the palate, holding the high strength perfectly. A gentle sweetness, honey and fruit syrup arrive, orange blossom, apricot jam and again the floral bouquet all gentle soft notes are holding off the phenols, a testament to the distillation techniques to allow the character of our spirit to come through with being dominated by the high level of phenols.
Finish: Naturally the phenolic presence comes through on the finish, the floral notes fade and the dry smoke, earthy with dry grass come through. Burnt heather, toffee and malt sugar all play a part in a complex long finish.