Whisky Review – Octomore OBA (Octomore Black Art). @bruichladdich

Octomore OBA (Octomore Black Art)
59.7% ABV

Non chill filtered

No added colouring

£99 from Bruichladdich – alas sold out very quickly. 


Another Octomore. Another experience. 

Nose. 

Fruity on first pour. Oranges, grilled pineapple rings on the BBQ. A Ham from the same BBQ, done crispy! Smoke starts bellowing through with further sniffs. There’s some wine reduction on the meat now which is turning more spare ribs, and a bit of Chinese five Spice. Even some Peking duck. This is immense and I haven’t stopped sniffing since the pour. Loads going on. Immensely complex and continually evolving. Ok, so give it a rest for a few minutes. 
Starting again. Burnt stuff. Toffee (burnt), pineapple (grilled), a slice of orange (thick cut, dried and toasted), some dark chocolate (melted), fennel (well roasted), bubbling caramel, pork crackling. There’s an overlying fruitiness, almost like things are covered with breakfast juice as it’s all cooking. It’s bloody lovely. A bit more time and some added herbal notes, but this is all about the fruitiness. Oh yeah, it’s quite smokey as well, but the smoke is muted a little behind the immense fruit, not to say it isn’t smokey though, it is, a nice background raging bonfire in autumn smoke. 

Palate. 

Lovely sweet fruit juice arrival, lots of fruit, orange juice, mango, grapes (a bit of wine), berry juices, blackberry/blackcurrent jam, marmalade. There’s a liquorice root in there somewhere as well, during the ABV burn, which is extremely short and pleasant, this is easy to drink at full strength!! Very easy in fact, extremely sip-able, scarily so. The mouthfeel is BIG, oily and utterly tremendous. During the delivery there is a hint of well done ribs, and that Chinese style meat rub, some chocolate late on which goes very seamlessly into the finish. It’s incredibly chewy overall, and the whole palate experience is one you want to experience over and over again. This is really drinkable, extremely enjoyable. Probably one of the most, if not the most drinkable Octomore’s I’ve had. 

Finish. 

Chocolate, dried fruits, and a touch of liquorice. It’s a medium to long length finish, warming, not burning, well matured, delicious juice. 

Adding water. 

I’ve made it through the majority of a dram without adding water. But it needs to be done as I could be missing out. A small splash added and sat back for a bit. It’s unleashed the smoke beast. Lots of smoke now, almost (I said almost) too much, it’s definitely muted the fruitiness quite a bit. The herbal notes now come second, lots of liquorice and some fallen wood on a forest floor, perhaps even some damp earth and a touch of mushroom. The palate has more grapes, berries, quite a bit more wine influence, lots of fruit, juicier and less toasted, still very easy to drink, in fact easier now, making this one of the most dangerous whiskies I’ve had for high ABV quaffability. The finish has more of a wine tannin note to it now, very pleasant, but not as nice as the undiluted. I personally wouldn’t add water to this whisky, you gain in the terms of easy to drink, but you loose an experience which is worth holding onto. 

Conclusion. 

This is the one of the, if not the most drinkable Octomore’s I’ve had. I really want to know it’s make up, but I’m guess I’m never going to find out with it being a black art(?). It’s absolutely delicious, I hope many more people will open and enjoy their bottles and not auction it. You’re missing out if you sell it guys and gals! Open it. Drink it. It’s magnificent. 

From my own collection. (This review from a bottle share split with friends). 

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