1983 Caol Ila 30 Year Old K&L Exclusive Signatory Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml)
We just can't stay away from these old Caol Ilas. Maybe it's because they're the last old Islays available, but we keep coming across these casks of Caol Ila that are just on fire. Caol Ila (arguably the most unsung Islay distillery) was spared closure in 1983, while its sister distillery Port Ellen was not so lucky. Caol Ila reliably churned out whisky throughout the 80s whisky slump to provide a smoky base to the big name blends. While collectors the world over search for the final few bottles of Port Ellen left out there, few realize that if they just expanded their horizons slightly, they'll find equally wonderful old Islay whisky is still available--and I might even call it affordable. This spectacular cask from the Signatory warehouses is strikingly different from the 32 year we released last year. Here, we have much less focus on the exotic wood, earth and funk and much more classic Islay in every sense. We can go down the list and describe the expected and clearly evident flavors of smoke, ash, brine, lemon peel, oyster shell, nuts, it's all there. It takes a slightly herbal turn on the finish with powerful core, but remains above all other things balanced. Of course, that doesn't tell you anything about how special this whisky actually is. All I can say is that Caol Ila is one of our favorite distilleries and this malt is exactly why.