It was only a question of time until Diageo’s turn to hop on the NAS bandwagon, and release an expression with a nice Gaelic sound to it, wasn’t it? So, it’s here, the new Caol Ila ‘Moch’ (meaning: dawn in Gaelic).
It’s not everyday that Caol Ila releases a new OB and this one got good reviews from bloggers and whisky sites who tasted it recently. I was quite keen on trying this one out…
So what is so different about this expression? First, as i noted, it’s a NAS bottling which means it’s probably younger than the entry level 12 year old Caol Ila we all know (and which i consider to be a lovely dram, despite the “bon ton” to trash OB Caol Ilas and say they are not as good as an equivalent Laphraoig or Ardbeg). In addition this one is supposed to be less ‘peaty’ and smoky than the ‘regular’ OBs, some kind of a Caol Ila counterpart to the Infamous Ardbeg Blasda.
Malts.com (Diageo’s site) says:
Taking its name from the Gaelic for ‘dawn’, Moch is a wonderful newcomer from this renowned distillery. It is the first single malt from Caol Ila to be selected for taste alone: sweet, smooth and lightly smoky, unconstrained by age, cask wood, strength or finish.
To nose, it’s clean, appetising and shows subtle citrus fruit with just a puff of smoke. Smooth and pleasant in the mouth, it begins sweetly then yields a fragrant smokiness then a delicious sweet-smoky, lingering finish.
Let’s check out how this dram really is…
Caol Ila Moch, 43% , NAS
Nose: Citrus notes among coastal maritime notes of sea spray, fruit and gentle smoke.
Palate: Sweet entry, than a wave of smoke comes in! smoked bacon, a bit of rubber, peat, and malty-sweet cereals.
Finish : Medium on smoke, cereals and malt.
lighter and less aggressive than the 12, yet round and nice! A lovely entry point people getting acquainted with Islay malts, and a very drinkable Islay, with a lot of smoke, but lighter on the rubber medicinal notes.
sincere thanks to GJ for the sample.