No, I don’t have an entire Feis Ile themed week lined up. Peated whiskies aren’t really my preferred style anyway. (And yes, I understand Islay has more to offer than smoky malts.) But, seeing as I still had a review of the Big Peat Feis Ile 2023 in the chamber, I might as well publish it today – the opening day of the festival.
Dubbed Big Peat The Smokehouse Edition, it has been “finished predominantly in rich and robust Red Wine casks.” That’s a direct quote from the press release. Notice the word predominantly. That’s an interesting choice. It could mean that some other cask types were used for finishing. But I suspect it signifies the Big Peat Feis Ile 2023 was just partially finished in red wine casks, while some of the malts for this vatting weren’t.
Big Peat Feis Ile 2023 – Smokehouse Edition (48%, OB)
Nose: Hints of red fruit and fudge intertwine with notes of medicinal smoke, charcoal and dollops of vanilla custard. Also, a touch of almond paste, so hopefully that’s your thing.
Taste: A decently oily mouthfeel, especially at what I assume is a reduced strength. Caramel, fudge and barley husks, but with a pinch of white pepper, wood smoke and some cured meats.
Finish: Medium to long. Lingering notes of pepper, a touch of mushy banana, and plenty of charred lemon.
Sample provided by Douglas Laing