Highlands region – 50%ABV – $£ ???
1st Edition can be found for $?? sold out in most US stores | £77 (£66 ex VAT)
2nd Edition can be found for: $87 | £54 (£45 ex VAT)
I have a lot to cover in my side by side to these two Kilchomans so I’ll keep this quick. As an opener, know that the 100% Islay series from Kilchoman is quite different from their standard releases:
I love that Kilchoman runs this series and look forward to trying 3rd, 4th and, 5th edition 100% Islays!
On the nose — The first edition, in contrast to the latest 100% Islay, comes off as heavy and medicinal.
Truthfully, both are light in character but the second edition is quite sweet and filled with pear drops, a touch of sea air, malt, yeast and the actual sweetness of wash that permeates every inch of their distillery.
The second edition of the 100% Islay is transporting me back to my visit to the Kilchoman distillery.
Turning back to the first edition of this more lightly peated Kilchoman (both are peated to about 25ppm as compared to their standard level of 50ppm), the character is more like a rainy morning at a beach during low tide: salty, sea shells, some lemon, day old linens – comforting & relaxing as I nose it whereas the second edition is more lively and invigorating.
Two very different animals so far. Both enjoyable.
On the mouth — First edition: great mouthfeel and more of an initial sweetness (something I didn’t really get while nosing it). Phenolic, canvas army bags, lemons (again), salty to taste and very light vanilla influence. This is a fine example of a young Islay whisky. Drying as I get to the finish, too.
Second edition: More exotic in flavor! candied caraway seeds and candied young lime rind. I am reminded of a Thai dish I was told was called “Ming Com” I had once while in Seattle. There was some sort of green leaf I used to grab lime chunks and small red chilies – this is the combo I am getting here. A lighter mouthfeel than the first edition but the flavor combination helps to make up for that.
Finish — First edition: Medium length with just a touch of wood spice on the center of the tongue.
Second edition: a long, exotically sweet finish.
In sum — Two very different, yet satisfying drams. For my tastes (at least as far as today goes), the second edition’s style and the invigorating element to it made me really connect with it. I often enjoy whisky as a pick me up rather than something meant to relax me.
Want to relax? Get the first edition.
Need a pick-me-up? the second edition is the way to go!
Special thanks to ImpEx for the sample of 2nd edition Kilchoman. The 1st edition was my bottle but now I want a bottle of the 2nd edition 🙂
My guess is you’ll enjoy Jason from Guid Scotch Drink’s review of the Kilchoman 100% Islay 2nd edition
Shouted from the roof tops, for all to hear (hint: play the below clip):
And this is how I felt when I heard WhiskyLive was coming to Boston… Me bursting with joy and excitement as Fredrick Frankenstein; my wife giving the same sort of confused look Peter Boyle’s monster character gave to Dr. Frankenstein in the above clip.
Comic and movie geeks are into Comic Con; Guitar players are hot for Guitar Shows; Quilters are into Paducah Quilt Show; we whisky geeks are into Whisky shows and I was particularly excited about first Annual WhiskyLive Boston because:
So, did WhiskyLive deliver on its first year in Boston? The simple answer is: yes. But, why yes?
Firstly, as far as whisky shows go, this is one of the longest at 4.5 hours (if you get the VIP ticket, 3.5 hours for the standard ticket). The extra time was particularly good for me as I was locked in traffic and didn’t get to the event until it was an hour and a half in.
My traffic woes aside, for those interested in attending some of the master classes, the extra time allows you to attend a couple of these classes without feeling like you’ve not had enough time on the tasting floor. That is a good thing.
Being in Boston presented an added bonus: Sam Adams, being a Boston based brewery, had a “Bier Garten” at the show pouring some really interesting brews including their Utopias which is normally a $150/750ml bottle, bottled at 27%ABV!
As this was WhiskyLive’s first year in Boston, the show was, as expected, a bit smaller than their normal shows. For me, that was just fine! I like to have a chance to talk with the people behind the tables. I’m there not just to taste whisky. I’m there to learn. Though the show (from a “number of tables” standpoint) was *slightly* smaller, this was a well attended show! Lots of feet on the floor. It’s quite obvious that Boston is a solid market for a good whisky festival and WhiskyLive seems to fit the bill quite nicely.
Let’s get to some of the whiskies that were new to me:
I did have more new whiskies that night but, in addition to all of my pictures getting wiped from my phone, I lost all of my notes from that evening (KHAAAAN!!!!)!
I need to point out something here. Whisky aside, it was such a treat to have my friend and business partner, Jason Johnstone-Yellin, in town. That crazy bugger flew up from Virginia to be at WhiskyLive (See?? We whisky geeks are CRAZY!). I need to make some shout-outs, too:
All-in-all, I am quite happy I attended and super excited to have a show so close to me.
If you’ve not been to a whisky event before, I highly suggest a WhiskyLive event. If you live in the Boston area (or within a few hours), I hope to see you there next year! This time next year, I’ll be behind a table pouring Single Cask Nation whiskies!
Thanks again, Jeffery C!