Independent Bottling of the Month: Caol Ila 20 Year (Kingsbury, 1996)

Caol Ila 20 Year

At Whisky Foundation, we like to keep you up to date with everything from the world of malt and peat. But we also know that there’s a world of difference between reading about independent bottlings and actually drinking the whisky. (We know which we prefer to do.)

And that got us thinking: what if, every month, we suggest an independent bottling for you to try? The world of independent bottling is so diverse that it’s difficult to know where to start – this series should help those new to independent bottling find a whisky to start with, or some old hands try a whisky they might otherwise have missed.

So that’s what we’re going to do. We’ll make sure that the whisky is always something really quite special but with a price tag that doesn’t break the bank – that way, if you’d like to treat yourself to a new malty delight, it’s not going to sting too much.

And so, without further ado here’s the very first Whisky Foundation independent bottling of the month:

Caol Ila 20 Year (Kingsbury, 1996) 

We thought we’d kick off the IB of the Month with a Whisky Foundation exclusive, which means that the Caol Ila 20 Year (Kingsbury, 1996) can only be found right here at Whisky Foundation.

And what a whisky to have as an exclusive – we couldn’t be happier to be able to be able to offer this whisky to you. It’s well-rounded, balanced and has a long salt finish typical of Caol Ila malts.

Distilled at Caol Ila, an iconic distillery near the Islay port town of Port Askaig overlooking the Sound of Islay, the Caol Ila 20 Year was then aged in a rum cask for 20 years and bottled by Kingsbury.

Bottled at a cask strength of 56.90% abv from cask #819, Kingsbury haven’t chill-filtered or added any colour to the 229 bottles produced, which means that all the subtle flavour (particularly the spice, fruit and vanilla notes) from the rum cask is left intact.

A little about Caol Ila 

Caol Ila is a classic Islay malt, made with peated malts and allowed to breathe the salty coastal air during maturation, both of which have a huge impact of the final flavour of the whisky. The Caol Ila is an easy-going single malt whisky with dry aromas of the sea air and a distinct smokiness on the palate.

Kingsbury: an independent bottler with vision 

Founded in Aberdeen in 1989, Kingsbury Wine & Spirits Co has always stayed true to its three central values: the careful selection of the cask, aging the whisky in a single cask and absolutely no chill-filtration. And it has paid off – they’ve bottled an incredible selection of cask strength single malts.

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