It’s already been over a month, but a fond memory still. On the 9th of November we went all the way to Den Bosch for the annual Peat Night, or ‘Turfkoekhapavond’. It was an utter disaster to get there, as is tradition by now, since we also had the annual delay of about 100% of the usual time it takes to get there.
Anyway, the night was bound to make up for that, as it does every year. Six peated whiskies for the winter months. The line-up had been announced and on the drive over there we spent some time devising plans to make it hard on the host of the night.
Generally we won’t shut up during the night and he can barely get a word in edgewise. So, he has decreased his introduction time for each whisky from about three minutes to thirty seconds. Of course, after his thirty seconds we just sat there urging him on and demanding more information. We’re dicks. And we have fun doing it. Also, Rob Stevens knows what to expect.
The whiskies then:
Kilchoman 100% Islay, 8th edition, 50%
Lots of peat, some vanilla and sweetness. Earthy, with quite a lot of oak.
Port Charlotte 10 years old, 50%
Dry with heather and peat. Slightly salty, slightly spicy. Some bandaids and brine.
Talisker 8yo CS, 59.4%
Lots of fruit, some mint, the obvious Talisker pepper. Some fudge and toffee and oak. It’s sharp and somehow reminds me of sherry instead of the bourbon casks it’s drawn from. Some soup or stock flavors, but in a very good way.
Caol Ila Feis Ile 2018, 58.2%
Peat smoke and olive oil. Slightly engine smoke like. Hay, marram grass, salt and ash.
Lagavulin 12, 2018, 57.8%
Lemony and salty, with ash and a very typical coastal note. Very warming.
Octomore 09.1, American Oak, 59.1%
It’s rather crisp with lots of smoke (duh). It’s too simple and too much of what it does. Very dry, which is a bit of a redeeming factor. But still, boring, especially after the awesomeness that came before.
Afterwards we were generously poured a glass of the 2017 Lagavulin Distillery Only. An awesome whisky. I didn’t write any notes because I still have a bit of it at home and I want to do a more in depth review.
All in all, the obvious winner of the night was the Talisker 8 years old. The Lagavulin 12 is great, as it is every year. Just a bit predictable, of course. The Kilchoman and Port Charlotte were nice enough, but couldn’t hold a candle to the others. The Octomore is as I’ve come to expect from them. Predictable, not very good but a nice gimmick.
I’m already looking forward to next year’s edition!