Hidden peat smoke allows the floral, malty spirit and the sweet American oak to combine in perfect harmony, before dry, earthy smoke sweeps across the palate.
Octomore 13.1 is as youthful and dynamic as its super-heavily peated predecessors. Distilled patiently from the 2015 harvest of 100% Scottish Mainland barley, this single malt is malted to a stratospheric 137.3 PPM and matured in the highest quality American oak casks.
All Octomore .1 editions are distilled from 100% Scottish barley. They are primarily aged only in ex-American oak, in varying percentages of either ex-bourbon or ex-Tennessee whiskey casks.
Acting as the backbone of each new series, Octomore's .1 releases demonstrate the raw character of the clean Octomore spirit, balanced with the modest ex-American whiskey influence - and offer a necessary comparison from which the other expressions alternate. After five aged years in first fill ex-American oak casks, our Head Distiller has offered a unique twist in this 13.1, having gathered and recasked the spirit in 2021 into yet more fresh, first fill ex-American oak casks. This final injection of flavour, taken from the interaction between the spirit and the oak, offers additional flavours of dark toffee, coconut and vanilla. This single malt is a testament to the trust that the head distiller, Adam Hannett, has in the quality of his ingredients.
BARLEY PROVENANCE: 100% Scottish grown Concerto barley
MALTING: Super Heavily Peated
DISTILLATION: Distilled in 2016 from the 2015 harvest
AGE: 5 Aged Years
MATURATION PROFILE: Full-term maturation in first fill bourbon barrels
PHENOL LEVEL: 137.3 parts per million (PPM)
STRENGTH: 59.2% ABV
Golden Hebridean sands
Initial impressions are of sweet nutty smoke, loaded with barley sugar and ripe fruit. Syrupy apricot and ripe pear along with malty vanilla notes of barley flour and Crème Brulee, honey and tablet. The American oak brings coconut, almonds and charred oak. The peat smoke is delicate but powerful and, along with the charred oak, brings out boot polish, leather and earthy notes.
A viscous texture across the palate, the feeling is of densely smoked grain which comes through like smoked granola with honeyed fruit. A second sip brings the opportunity to decipher the complexity on the palate, with smoked apricot jam, barley flour, peat embers and burnt heather balanced with gooseberry citrus and sweet Turkish delight. Oak chips, sugared almonds and chocolate-limes with spicy aniseed comes toward the finish. A drop of water intensifies the smoke and brings out the minerality of the whisky.
On the finish the sweetness fades and an earthy, mossy note remains on the palate wrapped in dry heathery peat smoke. Salty-citrus and floral notes of geranium and rose come through calmly to round off another wonderful expression of the Octomore paradox.