22 Sep 2011
Octomore 4.1 (167 ppm)
Posted by: Ruben Luyten In: Bruichladdich
While the first Octomore releases had long waiting lists, the latest bottling is still widely available three months after it arrived in stores. It takes the phenol levels even further (first 131 ppm, then 140 and 152, now 167 ppm).
In another glass, I have the original Octomore 1.1 to compare.
Octomore 5 yo 04.1
(62,5%, OB 2010, 167 ppm, 15.000 btl.)
Nose: the new one is hotter and sharper than the first release. I wouldn’t say it seems peatier, on the contrary, the sharpness blocks some aromas and brings out a more biscuity side. It even seems younger (with more apple peel and synthetic sweetness). No ashtray blast, no garage smells. Some almonds, soft vanilla and herbal notes instead (heather, juniper). Rounder, more citrusy, more aromatic, but less smoky and peaty (yes, that may sound contradictory). Mouth: very clean, oily and intense. It feels like it has an anaesthetic effect? Tarry and grassy with a peppery hotness, but again a less mind-boggling intensity than Octomore 1.1. Heather notes again with herbal tea. Faint anti-septic notes. More plain smoke now, still accompanied by a slightly artificial fruitiness. Finish: medium long, with a veil of smoke and the lingering candied notes.
I wouldn’t have guessed this is the peatiest dram around. Not sure why, but the first release seems smokier and peatier, on the nose as well as in the mouth. Even though it’s not a bad dram, shouldn’t we conclude the new one is less impressively experimental and less true to the concept? Around € 100.