Caol Ila 1981 (Thosop)

Although this Caol Ila 1981 was obviously distilled in the current (rebuilt) distillery, its style is said to be reminiscent of the smaller, demolished distillery it replaced in 1972. It was bottled last year by Thosop in their series with handwritten labels.


Caol Ila 1981 (Thosop)Caol Ila 30 yo 1981 (50,6%, Thosop 2011, bourbon cask, 153 btl.)

Nose: nicely coastal and medicinal, as expected, but smooth and quite fruity at the same time. Lime and banana. Some sweet almond milk. Linseed oil, hints of flax. Menthol. Soft vanilla. Complex nose, which gets sweeter and more fragrant over time. Excellent.

Mouth: very oily now with quite some leather. Then medicinal notes, a few leafy / herbal hints, camphor and briney notes towards the end. Overall less rounded than one the nose, more peat, iodine and zesty lemon. There’s some banana in the background but I’m missing a bit of the fruity notes here.

Finish: long, ashy and peppery. Still a leafy / earthy edge and brine.

As expected, good Coal Ila with an excellent nose. It’s nicely assertive and relatively peaty. Around € 125 which was a very good price. I think there are still a few bottles out there. Thanks for the generous sample, Stefan!

Score: 91/100