Coopers Choice is a Scottish independent bottler founded in 1992. I can’t say I’ve tried a lot of their whiskies but we’re familiar with the distillery of course, and the simple fact that The Whisky Fair selected this Caol Ila 1982 already means something.
Caol Ila 30 yo 1982
(52%, The Coopers Choice for Limburg Whisky Fair 2013, bourbon hogshead #4721, 275 btl.)
Nose: hello there! Lovely nose, starts off in a fruity way (ripe bananas, tangerines). Very oily, greasy peat. Waxy crayons and plasticine. Leather. Almond oil. Not too sharp, nor too briney, very well balanced. Subtle hints of petrol and seaweed. Really elegant. It even becomes slightly farmy (stables, wet wool). Actually it comes quite close to the latest Brora 35yo’s. Enough said.
Mouth: clean and well rounded. Again a sweet peaty layer but less prominently fruity now (maybe crystallized oranges). Gets slightly punchier and more coastal. Lots of medicinal notes: camphor, iodine. Wax again, garage aromas, wet gravel, aniseed and liquorice. Salted almonds.
Finish: long, coastal and leathery.
Caol Ila can be boringly good, if you know what I mean. This one is special, it stands out with its waxy old-style profile and its Brora-esk farmy hints. Not the cheapest Caol Ila but not as insanely priced as Brora either. A wonderful dram, I love it. Around € 200.
Conservative score: 93/100