At present we’re in for a enjoyable deal with, tasting Port Askaig Islay whisky at 12 years of age, however with two very totally different barrel therapies. (As a reminder, the Port Askaig model is made up of whiskies sourced from different Islay distilleries — by no means named, however bottled as Port Askaig.)
Particulars on the 2 spirits — every designed to “replicate the seasons” — comply with together with tasting notes for every. Let’s get to it. Each are bottled at 91.6 proof.
Port Askaig 12 Years Previous – Bourbon Cask Matured (Spring 2021 Version) – This simple bottling accommodates distillate from 2006 and 2007 from the north-east coast of Islay (I presume that is Caol Ila) and has been matured for over 12 years in ex-bourbon hogsheads. A bit sweaty on the nostril, with a giant chimney soot character up entrance, it is a tight little quantity, no less than in distinction to most different Port Askaig bottlings I’ve encountered. Distinctly maritime, the palate presents notes of seaweed and creosote, finally exhibiting some fruit within the type of apple and pear. Hazy, virtually muddy, with smoke all through, it by no means actually evolves to supply a lot in the way in which of distinctive character, retaining on a straight and slim highway that retains peat firmly within the headlights, by no means actually wavering. 5000 bottles produced. B / $100
Port Askaig 12 Years Previous – Marriage of Bourbon and Sherry Casks (Fall 2021 Version) – This whisky “is a wedding of whiskies (seemingly from the identical distillery) from 9 refill American oak hogsheads, 5 Oloroso sherry butts, and three solera sherry butts,” making for a extra complicated expression — each on paper and within the glass. Sharper on the nostril, it’s nonetheless aggressive with smoke, however tempered with citrus and an oxidized, winey character clearly pushed by the sherry barrel. The sherry affect is robust on the palate, providing a nutty and once more fairly winey overtone that finds a greater sense of steadiness with the hefty peatiness — although the end once more showcases that sharp and enduring oxidized character that actually manages to linger for ages. 9000 bottles produced. B+ / $100