Signature Isle of Raasay Single Malt, 46.4% ABV

raasay single malt whisky

The magical Isle of Raasay lies off the west coast of Scotland in the Inner Hebrides, separated from the Isle of Skye by a short 25 minute ferry journey.

Rooted in centuries of illicit distilling, Raasay provides the ingredients for the perfect dram.

Every drop of spirit is distilled, matured and bottled on the island using water from our well.

Isle of Raasay Whisky
raasay distillery

Appearance

I’d say this whisky is between light and medium gold in colour, it has a nice thick swirl line, and syrupy teardrops that turn into slow medium/thick legs.

Nose

Initially I’m getting cream soda and black cherries mixed with pencil shavings and fire smoke, it’s a really nice combo, and it brings a dustiness with it, which i generally acquaint with older whiskies for some reason.

I’d also say there are wood wax aromas in there too, with sandalwood, pineapples and limes. I could very easily nose this for some time tbh, it develops rather nicely.

More time brings a medicinal note, perhaps germoline and fabric plasters, a floral/perfume note comes through also.

Palate

It kicks off with a good mouthfeel and there’s more peat, smoke and ash here than the nose offered, so yummy. Alasdair Day, part owner of the distillery told us that it’s peated to a low PPM, but it comes across higher on the palate for me.

I’m going to say there are tropical and stoned fruits here too, pineapples, pomelo for sure, and guava, and it becomes quite spicy, dark chocolate coated ginger biscuits would describe it well. As it develops i’m definitely getting stronger medicinal peat flavours, mainly germoline and bbq meats, with icing sugar, and sweet lemon also.

Finish

Quite long, and it intensifies with time. Black peppercorns, dark chocolate, coffee beans, star anise, cardamom, char, cinnamon, and out of nowhere a real sweet piercing note, and it’s gone. I’m going to say stem ginger too, there’s loads going on.

My thoughts

I came to nosing and tasting this whisky knowing the thoughts of other whisky loving folk who have tried it, but i still needed to stay neutral. I had also tasted samples from all 6 of the casks that this whisky would be vatted from, in fact i’d tasted them all twice with roughly a year between them, and they were seriously impressive at that stage.

Having tasted the potential constituent parts i thought i might have been able to recognise them in the finished whisky. No i couldn’t, the finished whisky is far greater than the sum of it’s parts, flavours came through that vatting had produced, that i just didn’t know would be in there, the surprises made me smile with satisfaction.

After spending 35-40 minutes nosing and tasting this whisky i had to agree with other whisky folk who have tried it, it’s a belter of a dram.

I am rather old school in my thoughts on whisky, but along with a couple of other distilleries i am coming round to understanding that young whiskies can be wonderful, some don’t need to be 10 or 12 years old minimum. This Single malt is a perfect example of a young whisky that is jam packed with aromas and flavours, it has been crafted beautifully, i can totally see why it’s almost all gone now (there are still bottles available at the distillery at the time of writing this review.)

Would i buy a bottle?

It’s an absolute no brainer for me to be honest, yes i would without a doubt, and i will go as far as to say that this bottle is up there with a couple of others in my “favourite whiskies of 2021” category. It is a pleasure to drink in my humble opinion, i love it, and roll on the next release, which according to Alasdair Day could be a slightly more peated whisky, such a tease.

Notes – This whisky is natural in colour and non chill filtered.

Thanks to – Gareth, Phil and Alasdair, plz do give them a follow on twitter using the buttons below.

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