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2000 Gordon & Macphail Caol Ila Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (700ml)
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- ABV 61.4%
Caol Ila (Gaelic for 'the Sound of Islay') is situated on the north eastern shores of Islay, with magnificent views across the Sound of Islay to the spectacular Paps of Jura. The distillery was built in 1846 by Hector Henderson - a Glasgow businessman with a keen interest in distilling. Like Bunnahabhain and Bruichladdich, the development of Caol Ila created along with it a community of its own. Without these distilleries, it is likely that there would have been little sustained human interference in these areas at all.
In 1857 Henderson went out of business and the distillery was purchased by Bulloch Lade & Co. The Distillers Company Limited took over management in 1927. From this date production continued until 1972, when the entire structure of the distillery was demolished.
A larger, modernised operation was built in the same original architectural style. Craftsmen also faithfully reproduced the six stills from the original design to ensure a continuity of style. Production resumed in 1974. Today, Caol Ila is the largest producer on the island, with much of its output making its way into blends.
Stylistically, this is one of the more lightly peated Islays. Nevertheless, for lovers of Ardbeg, Laphroaig, and Lagavulin, cask strength releases of this whisky should impress.
Other reviews... The nose is quite green and rich with a well-balanced sweetness, counteracted by the elegant Caol-smoke. Notes of dried kelp and tar with a touch of apple peel and underripe fruit. Some notes of barley develop. The palate is rich and quite lively with peppery oak and charred toasted spice. Notes of seaweed and a defined coastal quality with a gentle smoke and chewy, dark peat. The finish is long and smoky with rock salt and tar and cut herbs. 61.4% Alc./Vol. - Malt Masterssize>