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#240

PEAT OF THE BUNCH

15 Oct 2015 By

Bruichladdich just released the peatiest whisky in the world – that’s some achievement. The Octomore 7.1 (sounds like a gadget, looks like a tech toy) gets all the old school stuff right: great taste, smooth delivery and plays well with others.

REVIEWED BY JAMIE SMITH

It’s not hard to spot a bottle Bruichladdich on a shelf in a dimly lit bar. Like that angsty kid in the back row of a school photo, it puts one finger up to the establishment. But don’t let the Tiffany-blue bottle fool you. This kid has more than meets the eye.

The bottle is in fact quite symbolic of Bruichladdich’s progressive approach. It’s shouting a message. It questions the very foundation from which many other traditional distilleries exist by. But do we really need a bottle label with a picture of bagpiper on a dreary glen? Does the whisky have to sit in a barrel for 18 years to achieve optimum taste? In fact, Bruichladdich is aged approximately five years and the spirit is light vanilla in colour. This is not due to its young age, but a brand principle of refusing to follow the industry practice of using artificial colours to make the whisky appear richer in taste.

Bruichladdie

With this unique standpoint, Bruichladdich is growing a reputation for producing cult single malts that challenge​s the malt convention. The distillery currently produces three different varieties: Bruichladdich, always unpeated. Port Charlotte, heavily peated; and Octomore, which is ​the most heavily peated spirit in the world. One not to miss is Bruichladdich’s Octomore 7.1  –​ the seventh and latest expression of its super-peaty series. On a scale of 1-10, this one is a “whoa!”.​

Bruichladdich Octomore 7.1

Of the three varieties of Bruichladdich sampled during a tasting at Manhattan Bar (Regent Singapore), the Octomore 7.1 was a standout, and not just for its sleek bottle design. This 59.5% whisky is also aged five years and matured in some of the world’s finest bourbon casks.

Bruichladdich

The initial smooth and fruity note soon turns through to smoke and tinder (we swiped right on this). The absence of a harsh heat on the throat that one might expect from a 59.5% spirit – combined with its peaty body – makes this an extremely flavourful yet durable whisky. Admittedly, this super-peaty whisky may not suit all palates; so if the peat seems too heavy then opt for the more approachable Port Charlotte. For a perfect whisky cocktail, mix Octomore 6.1 or 7.1 with blended fresh pear and vanilla bean. Try it at Manhattan Bar; they made a killer one for us.

More about Bruichladdich here

Like this? Read about the Macallan Rare Cask, also without any spirit caramel

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