On the nose, there’s peat, explosive peat, as if a peat block were soaked in kerosene and ignited in a vacuum into which pure oxygen had been pumped. There’s also a note of cooking oil, but there’s a hint of the sea there, too: maybe olive oil from IKEA–or the seal oil I like to imagine they sell as cooking oil in the IKEA stores in Sweden (or maybe the baby seal oil they sell in the ones in Hell). This is powerful stuff. After this dram, we’re going to need to run our Glencairns through the autoclave if we’re ever going to use them again.
On the mouth, it’s like chewing willow bark to treat a headache on a long walk in the woods without aspirin. There’s also butterscotch candies and vanilla beans, but ones that found themselves dropped into one of the milder rings of Hades during a misdirected UN mission. Distinct hints of liquified charcoal briquets give way to notes of peppermint extract, but the kind you’d get in a 32 oz. jug from a discount store.
There are also something resembling air freshener as the mouth turns into the finish. But this is no normal air freshener, this is a three-wicked tub of aromatherapy from the Yankee Candle Company‘s Islay series, designed for misanthropes who live in huts (for the export market). As the finish fades on, the butterscotch is so intermingled with the peat and smoke, it seems to be in the grips of Stockholm Syndrome. The finish is briefly herbaceous, sustainedly fiery: an aloe vera plant cursed by a shaman so that its nectar causes second degree burns rather than assuaging them. The road would be too tame for this bad boy: it takes The Luge to Perdition.
The Kilchoman 5 Year Old ImpEx Bottling Bourbon Cask #360/07 is Winston Churchill’s “If you’re going through Hell, keep going.”–In this case, though, all the fire and peat and charred goodness makes you want to keep going.
Our thanks to Sam Filmus and ImpEx for the sample!