Review: Port Charlotte 2007 CC:01

Category: Islay single malt scotch whisky

Origin: Bruichladdich Distillery

Bottling: Rémy Cointreau

ABV: 57.8%

Cost: £63.60 from Bruichladdich

Port_Charlotte_CC_01_2007

What they say:

The Port Charlotte 2007 CC:01 is the latest in our thought-provoking range of single malts. Each is a tribute to the exceptional, heavily peated spirit that was created at Loch Indaal Distillery, until its closure in 1929.

As with every Port Charlotte the starting point is rich, elegant and thought-provoking spirit. High-provenance, smoky, heavily peated barley married to our slow, Victorian, trickle distillation delivers power with finesse. Here, this fascinating spirit has been matured full term in casks of finest French oak [Quercus robur]. They previously held one of the greatest Eau de Vie, from the western Cognac region. The salt spray of Islay combines with peat smoke to vie with the toasted oak and lemon barley sugar flavours of the wood to give a complex and unbelievably rewarding dram.

Character

It’s Port Charlotte, but not as we know it. the spirit of adventure is alive with a wonderful marriage of Port Charlotte spirit with its classic Islay DNA and truly exceptional casks from the heart of France.

Colour

Rose gold.

Nose

The DNA is Islay. Peat smoke and salt spray collide with the fruit and complexity of our classic spirit. poached pears, vanilla fudge and sweet apricots. Toasted oak and lemon barley sugar notes rise from the glass as it warms in your hand. As it breathes the whisky will release festive, warming aromas of cinnamon, ginger and more rich vanilla.

Palate

Irresistibly complex. This dram has layer upon layer of subtle fruit flavours so characteristic of our spirit wrapped comfortingly in the blanket of peat smoke. Yet there is a new dimension to this next release of Port Charlotte. A depth of character that comes from the years of maturation in ex cognac barrels. We have watched the spirit mature slowly over the last eight years to become a beguiling spirit that shows our spirit of curiosity and adventure is alive and well. This spirit has taken us down many paths and this particular journey has
come to fruition with a spirit that is a joy to taste. The wonderful french oak gives vanilla and spice and has brought this heavily peated Islay spirit to maturity with a class and finesse beyond its years. The fruit is rich and sweet – apples apricots and plums – as is the barley sugar and lemon honey notes that reassure you this is an Islay spirit matured in our warehouses under our watchful eye.

Finish

This whisky stays on your mind for longer than your palate and it stays on your palate for an age. Floral heather honey, zesty lemon and a nutty smoothness settle with the peat smoke that is always last to leave you. A truly astonishing whisky.

Distilled 03/10/2007, Rotation No 16/005, Bottled 21/01/2016

TW Port Charlotte CC:01 2007

What I say:

Thanks to Bruichladdich for the official sample. Sampled during the #WhiskyEx twitter tasting on 14th April 2016. This Port Charlotte, heavily peated, expression has been matured over 8 years in ex-Cognac barrels made from French Oak.

Colour:

Soave with copper and rose gold hints (4/20), medium-sized tapered tears leave fine legs

Nose:

Rubbery and stretched elastic with a real bite, smokey and almost sulphurous (vulcanized rubber), salty tang, ginger and cinnamon spice, vanilla essence, toasted coconut, drying tannic oak and stewed tea, stewed fruits; apple & pear, strudel, with a little custardy vanilla, toasted wholewheat bread with lemon curd and honey

Taste:

Similar to the nose initially with a mass of salt, tannins and vulcanized rubber (but not unpleasant), peat smoke with ginger, sweet honeyed fruits, apricot and peach slightly stewed, golden syrup, smoked pineapple and banana fritters, tannic oaky wood with hazelnut and chestnut, sweet tobacco leaf smoke (pipe smoke) and lemon & orange barley sugar sweeties

Finish:

Long, sweet and fruity then tannic, smoky, nutty and drying, sweetness persists

Overall:

An assault on the senses but in a well co-ordinated attack, this dram shifts from sugar to smoke and back again constantly with a massive tannic oak backbone to help it seamlessly shift like some sort of chameleon on the palate. Leaves you with fire in your belly. This I love!

Score: 88/100

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