An Islay vatting of Coal Il & Bowmore – 46%ABV – 750ml – $70
A while back, during my last trip to Chicago, I was in Binny’s checking out their selection and these Eades bottles caught my attention. Eades Double Malt. What is a Double Malt?
We know what Single Malt means, right? Malt whisky from a single distillery. So, what’s double malt? It’s the combination/marriage of two single malts by Jim McEwan of Bruichladdich for The Virginia Distilling Company. For the Islay Double Malt he took an 18yr Caol Ila and a 10yr Bowmore, matured them further in a Chateau d’Yquem Sauternes & Grenache cask (respectively). He then took 30% of that Caol Ila and 70% of the Bowmore, mixed them up, bottled them up and bam! – we have the Eades Double Malt – Islay.
Sounds interesting right? Right.
Before I go much further, I need to thank Pat J for the samples of this and the soon to be posted Speyside and Highland Double Malts.
Let’s see if this stuff is worth it’s weight in whisky:
On the nose — Big, thick nose filled with burning twigs and smoldering Birkenstocks (cork, rubber, leather – slightly charred).
Push this aside and now I’m confronted with royal jelly.
That classic Bowmore soapiness rears it’s head (you know, anytime I hear the term “rears it’s head” I get the impression of… well, think about it for a second… got it? Good).
Tannins are there.
Indian summer – humid, damp… fresh rain on asphalt.
Cranberries. What a nose!
On the mouth — Sweet smoke and a super succulent mouth feel.
Very smooth and silky.
The smoke now moves to the background as fall like flavors come to the fore.
Some nuttiness and apricots in there (the Sauternes influence for sure).
Drying leaves and honeyed herbal teas.
That fresh rain note is in the flavor as well.
Finish — Toasted apple peels. Honey, subtle smoke.
In sum — Oooof! What an interesting combination of aromas and flavors! There is a lot happening here! Insanely drinkable as an easy-goer but you can deconstruct the heck out of this too (if you want). One to enjoy with friends. Start it off as a conversation piece. I guarantee you’ll be coming back to it no matter where the conversation goes. For the academia folks out there – this is a back to school dram.