Kilchoman “Machir Bay”

Kilchoman 2Kilchoman (pronounced Kilhoman)  is one of the newest and smallest distilleries in Scotland, opening its doors in 2005. It currently produces a 3 and 5 year single malt, though they plan to release 8 year (2014), 10 year (2016) and 12 year (2018) bottlings. By what we taste from the junior varsity so far, age should make a good thing even better for Kilchoman’s future issues. The offerings are bottled yearly, quantified by flavor profile and maturation.  This means future releases of the Machir Bay (and others) will be re-released in more mature versions. You know what that means, don’t you? Evolving flavor (and regular purchases for each new iteration).

Distillery: Kilchoman
Region: Islay
Bottled: 2012
Strength: 46%
Price: $68.05
Maturation: Oloroso cherry casks
Location: Kilchoman
Nose: Peat, brine, vanilla, cake batter, honey suckle, horse sweat, butter, brown sugar
Palate: Smoke, sweet, kaffir lime,
Finish: Black cherry, smoke, iodine, brine

Comments: recommended adding a dash of water

Adam – I love the nose on this Scotch. What I like most about this whisky is that it tastes like potential. It doesn’t have all its planets aligned in the perfect order just yet but there is a lot going on when you take a sip, and I like that. It’s also incredibly smooth for such a young offering and I’m looking forward to furthering my exploration of their larder. I’ve found myself recommending it to people who want to try an Islay but are secretly afraid of the fabled peat monsters they’ve heard dwell there.

Kate – There are a lot of layers that come at you all at once. This is something you need to come back and revisit to find everything. Strong on the butter and brown sugar, before they simmer together, with a medium finish. I will forever remember this scotch based on Henry’s description. I like that this scotch adds unexpected flavours like hints of horse sweat (it sounds weird but the nose definitely reflects the smell).

Meghan – Sugar cookie sweet with clean barnyard mid-palate and kaffir lime finish. Don’t hold on it to too long or you’ll bring out the bitterness.

Henry – Sweet, smoky, briny. Like the lady parts of an island girl. Similar to the Ardbeg 10, but a young whisky with a lot of layers.

Michael – Sweet goes very quickly, with the hint of lime. A little smoke but there’s a Listerine-like quality that lingers on the end more than brine.

Jenny – This is fresh, compared to a lot of whiskys. No lingering deep smoke.

  • jojo abuan

    I was pleasantly surprised by this scotch. ive mostly stuck with bottles that have an age statement, but this and talisker storm have provided me a whole new perspective of how to navigate my choices.

    • The proliferation of No Age Statement (NAS) whiskys of recent years has been a pleasant surprise to us, especially when they include such gems as this one. While there are complicated reasons for the rise of NAS offerings, some of them are definitely worth exploring. I only hope that the older Kilchoman’s offerings get, the heftier the price tag.