Easter, and time to taste the Kilchoman sherry cask release that I bought last time I visited the distillery in April 2012. It’s a four and a half year old whisky matured in a first fill oloroso sherry butt from Miguel Martin in Spain. The whisky is bottled non-chill filtered at 46 %.The whisky has a deep gold natural colour. Combined with the young age, the colour indicates an active cask, what you can expect from a first fill sherry butt.
The whisky is light fruity, spicy and smoky with a vanilla background on the nose, but to some extent it's masked by immaturity in the form of decay and rotten cabbage.
When tasting, the whisky starts out sweet and rubbery, but it’s fading away giving place for a dry aftertaste.
The whisky is surprisingly harmonic and tasty given its young age. Give it some more years in the cask, and we will have a great whisky. But, already at its current age it’s absolutely enjoyable.
Compared with bourbon cask matured Kilchoman of the same age, I find the sherry butt matured Kilchoman to have much more of the sulphur character of the new make, probably due to the fact that charred casks are more active in removing impurities.