There is a whole wave of new bottlers in the Netherlands. We had Torsten Paul Whisky Company and Roger’s Whisky Company, but one that was still new to me is Single Note. Perhaps that’s not too surprising, because this Caol Ila 2008 I’m going to review today is only his second release (along with an 11-year-old Port Dundas).

Rick van Diepen, the owner of the Single Note, has had a passion for whisky (and jazz, hence the name) for many years. And last year a dream came true when he launched his very first bottling, which was also a Caol Ila. That first release was well received, so I’m very curious what this one will bring.

This 12-year-old Caol Ila has matured in an ex-bourbon cask before being re-racked into a 1st fill ex-bourbon cask. Bottled at a strength of 53.3% ABV.

Caol Ila 2008 tasting notes:

Nose: lightly peated, a bit less than expected of a Caol Ila of this age, but I like it. Plenty of vanilla. Seaweed and a hint of sea salt. It’s a little bit grassy too, with hints of freshly cut grass. Then minerals and lemon peels. Green apples, but also grapefruit.

Taste: a bit of subtle peat again. Lemons and green apples. Vanilla and caramel fudge in the back. Followed by a faint hint of white chocolate. Pink grapefruit. But also seaweed again and a briny note. A touch of white pepper and ginger.

Finish: mid-long to long. A touch of vegetal peat and minerals. White pepper, ginger and a hint of pink grapefruit and green apples.

It’s very fresh and fruity. The peat blends in very nicely with the fruity notes, so it seemed a little less peated than you might normally expect for a Caol Ila of this age, but it works really well. A well-balanced and rather tasty single malt.

Bottle provided by Single Note.