Already many greats amongst the 1981s so let’s see what our Belgian friends have pulled out here…
Colour: white wine.
Nose: the wonders of lazy casks when the distillate is great! Sure this baby (well, not quite a baby anymore) does not really smell ‘30’ but it certainly got more complex and more subtle than its younger bros and sistas, although it kept that medicinal side that reminds us of another Islayer from the south shore… Let’s not mention the obligatory brine and all the rest and rather focus on the unusual notes, such as honeysuckle, angelica, fresh figs, menthol cigarettes (mum’s Kools), pink grapefruits, the faint whiffs of camphor… Well, this is a superb nose!
Mouth: simply an extremely satisfying palate, with all things Caol Ila, maybe a little more brutal than on the nose, all on brine, seashells, lemon, ashes and that earthiness that can be so great. Top notch and globally bigger than expected.
Finish: long, with the pepper kicking in. Cinchona.
Comments: two malts in one, with a relatively civilised nose and a greatly raw and powerful palate. The peat is big!