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:
- They’re peated to a much lower ppm (25ppm as compared to 50ppm as per the usual Kilchoman release).
- I’m not sure if the distillate cuts are different compared to their standard spirit runs but over all, these are a different experience from other Kilchomans.
- Also, both editions of Kilchoman’s 100% Islay are all ex-bourbon matured whereas most Kilchomans are a mix of ex-sherry and ex-bourbon casks.
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