Review No.90. Kilchoman Machir Bay

There are a number of distilleries that have recently come into operation over the past few years and a few more scheduled to open in the coming years.  Kilchoman was founded in 2005 and describes itself as the only farm distillery on Islay and amongst a few around Scotland.  Farm only means that the entire production process from growing the barley to bottling the whisky is done on site.  Many distilleries get their supply of barley from a number of suppliers.  There is a very helpful explanation of their production process on their website.  They have released a number of non age statement bottles of with this Machir Bay being their signature malt and I believe the first one they released a few years ago.


Whisky: Kilchoman Machir Bay Single Malt Whisky, 46%

Nose: Lemon, rubber, ash, melon, earl grey, leather

Taste: Lemon sherbert, honey lemsip, grapefruit, ash, coastal salt

Finish: Peppery, soapy, long and dry

Score: 3.75

Summary: This is such a fresh whisky.  The peatiness comes across more coastal than smokey to me.  It’s the type of peat influence that I enjoy in contrast to the more medicinal and rubber notes you get with some peated single malts.  The balance between the coastal flavours, citrus and honey works well.  There is a sourness to this towards the end with the grapefruit note and a bit of peppery spice comes to fore in the finish along with a nice dry texture.  I look forward to seeing how their older single malts will turn out.


Scoring scale: My scores reflect a balance of the overall experience, availability and cost for a whisky,

1 – not to my preference

2 – tastes fine but does not excite me

3 – more to my liking and would revisit occasionally

4 – very much to my liking and would consider as a regular feature on my whisky shelf

5 – permanent feature on my whisky shelf


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