New 33 Year Old Islay Scotch Whisky Hits American Retail - The Whiskey Wash

New 33 Year Old Islay Scotch Whisky Hits American Retail

By Nino Marchetti / December 11, 2018

The Port Askaig line, as we’ve detailed in the past, is an independent Scotch whisky label that sources casks from the Islay region of Scotland. To date we’ve seen a non-age statement, 55% ABV expression and a 45 year old, among other offerings. Now word has come down of the American debut of a 33 year old sourced from “Islay’s largest distillery.”

The new Port Askaig 33 Year Old, according to those behind it, heralds from a single cask that’s likely been pulled from the many maturing at Diageo’s Caol Ila distillery. This whisky making facility happens to be the “largest distillery” on this island, so hence the connection. Whatever the case, it was bottled exclusively for whisky importer ImpEx Beverages, and only 115 bottles were produced.

Port Askaig 33 Year Old

Port Askaig 33 Year Old (image via ImpEx)

“This particular cask was specially selected by ImpEx Beverages and Port Askaig whisky-maker Oliver Chilton for its superb marriage of flavors, bringing together gentle smoke and peat reek with thick, juicy notes of Sicilian lemon and delicate honeysuckle,” said those at ImpEx in a prepared statement. “It is both elegant and expansive, highlighting the characteristics we look for when bottling Port Askaig.”

Though no immediate price was mentioned, it appears to be pricing for at least $850 at retail. You’ll find some official tasting notes for this 50.3% ABV whisky below – note as well it is both of natural color and non-chill filtered.

  • Nose: Soot and embers from a wood-burning stove. Rich orange marmalade and freshly-baked buttery pastry. Crème anglaise dusted with hints of cinnamon and delicate Middle-Eastern spices.
  • Palate: Oily and thick with a prickly touch of chili. Classic flinty notes come together with orange blossom, juicy satsumas and lemongrass, while an undercurrent of dusty smoke mingles with rock salt and black pepper.
  • Finish: Flavors of smoked bacon and cloudy honey linger, becoming drier as they develop over the long finish.