Caol Ila 1988
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."
Bob & Jill
(PS. I’m posting this under Tastings & Q&A since I started this thread in both places)