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Caol Ila 1988 from Gordon & MacPhail

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Caol Ila 1988 from Gordon & MacPhail

Postby Bob & Jill » Tue May 02, 2006 7:10 pm

I posted this question under Tastings, but nobody that replied had tasted this malt so I am posting it again here with hopes that someone has had experience with this:

I just bought an on sale bottle of Gordon & MacPhail's Connoisseurs Choice-Islay which is Caol Ila 1988 (a 13 yr old 40% alc). I was hoping it would be as good or better than the OB of Caol Ila 12 (which we really enjoy) since it was slightly more expensive. Haven't opened and tried it yet. Would like to get some opinions from those that have-- first.
Thanks, Jill
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Postby Admiral » Tue May 02, 2006 10:40 pm

Hi Bob & Jill,

I've tasted the 1988 G&M bottling you speak of, in fact I've still got an unopened bottle here at home.

It's a pleasant enough Caol Ila - nicely peated, yet surprisingly still malty. I enjoyed it, hence why I purchased the bottle.

I haven't done a direct A-B comparison with the OB Caol Ila 12, so I can't help you there, but I suspect the G&M bottling will be a little more gentle.

Cheers,
Admiral
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Caol Ila

Postby Bob & Jill » Wed May 03, 2006 7:34 pm

Thanks Admiral, I just wanted to make sure it was peaty enough. I read Murray's evaluation and it wasn't entirely clear on that. It did rate its finish higher than the OB of Caol Ila.
Jill
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Caol Ila 1988

Postby Bob & Jill » Sun May 14, 2006 11:49 pm

Mr. T,
In response to your statement: “ I think you should drink it and tell us what you think of it.” When I asked if anyone had tried Caol Ila 1988 (Gordon & MacPhail's Connoisseurs Choice), I now have a tasting report. We uncorked the bottle to celebrate the completion of our self-built home. I finally got the back hallway dry walled and painted. It only took 32 years to finally get the job completed---there were just too many other interesting things to do like canoe and taste different single malts.

Neither one of us are very good with putting into words what we are tasting in a whisky. We certainly can’t come up with all the flavors that the experts find in a malt. Nevertheless, we were very pleased with the 1988 Conn. Choice. There was no mistaking it was a Caol Ila. We had 1 oz. of OB 12 left in a bottle to compare it too. We were thinking this might not be a too fair comparison since it had probably breathed too much while sitting on the shelf in a almost empty bottle. What impressed me the most about the 1988 was the nose. It was very peaty but it also had something else that was light and almost lemony. I would rate the nose as good as Highland Park 12 (however Murray doesn’t). He was most impressed with 1988’s finish, calling it wonderful. I thought the finish nice but not as outstanding as the nose. Whereas comparing it to the OB 12, the 12 hardly had a nose. This was probably due to its loosing it in the almost empty bottle. The 1988 was more refreshing than the OB 12, with citrus tones---better in summer than winter I would say. There was a lightness or softness to it but it wasn’t weak. I was happy there still was plenty of smoky peat and a balanced malt.

We can agree with Dubois when he said: “For me the 12 OB is a much underrated bottle, really TOP” And we were just as pleased with the 1988.

We also agree with Admiral’s assessment of the 1988:
“I've tasted the 1988 G&M bottling you speak of, in fact I've still got an unopened bottle here at home. It's a pleasant enough Caol Ila - nicely peated, yet surprisingly still malty. I enjoyed it, hence why I purchased the bottle. I haven't done a direct A-B comparison with the OB Caol Ila 12, so I can't help you there, but I suspect the G&M bottling will be a little more gentle."

Jill
Bob & Jill
(PS. I’m posting this under Tastings & Q&A since I started this thread in both places)
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Postby MGillespie » Mon May 15, 2006 3:15 am

Jill, congratulations on getting the house finished...now you'll be able to tackle those remodeling projects! ;)

Mark
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Postby Bob & Jill » Tue May 30, 2006 7:27 pm

LesTaylor wrote:
“connoiseurs choice ardbeg. was quite revolting and unlike any ob bottle of ardbeg. it was thin and diluted in taste. good thing that ardbeg and gordon & mcphail have gone on to bigger and better things.”

“What vintage was the CC Ardbeg?
How long ago was it?
I've had some clunkers from G&M's CC range. A 1990 Clynelish (tasted in Spring 2004) was like dodgy bubblegum” BruceCrichton

“lets be honest all those pink labelled babies are just rough. once you have tried it you make a deal with yourself never to buy another dosen't matter what year it is. the mad man who designed the labelling i hear has gone to work for barbie dolls.” Les Taylor


Les, We recently posted this question under Caol Ila in Q&A:

I just bought an on sale bottle of Gordon & MacPhail's Connoisseurs Choice-Islay which is Caol Ila 1988 (a 13 yr old 40% alc). I was hoping it would be as good or better than the OB of Caol Ila 12 (which we really enjoy) since it was slightly more expensive. Haven't opened and tried it yet. Would like to get some opinions from those that have-- first. Thanks, Jill

I got this reply from Admiral: “I've tasted the 1988 G&M bottling you speak of, in fact I've still got an unopened bottle here at home.
It's a pleasant enough Caol Ila - nicely peated, yet surprisingly still malty. I enjoyed it, hence why I purchased the bottle.”

We tried the CC Caol Ila and agreed with Admiral’s assessment. It is a pleasant dram and it reminds me of a combination of Highland Park (the nose) and Caol Ila-12 (the peaty smoke).

Jill
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