Review: Kilchoman Machir Bay Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky / by Jason Hambrey

Kilchoman Machir Bay 2.jpg
ABV
46%
Aging
~6 Years; first-fill bourbon, oloroso sherry finish
Recipe
100% Malted Barley
Distiller Kilchoman (Rockside, Scotland)

I really enjoy Kilchoman. Machir bay is named after a bay near Kilchoman on Islay, a beautiful white sand beach. This whisky is primarily based on bourbon cask maturation as opposed to their “Sanaig” bottling, which has more of a focus on sherry cask maturation.


Review (2018)

  • Batch: N/A

  • Bottling Code: N/A

  • Bottling Date: 2016

As I review this, it is summer – 90% of my peated single malt consumption happens in the winter. It’s a nice time for a peated dram. Islay peat is special....

The nose is full of smoke, tar, cinnamon, and some really fascinating notes of bright orange zest and bubblegum. It is rich and it is balanced. The palate is full with rich BBQ smoke throughout, caramelized lemon, and rich earth, cinnamon, and clove. Still, quite bright – the citrus works really well. There is rich BBQ smoke (hardwood) on the finish, and throughout the centre of the palate. Palate is also full of earth and lemon.

Sweetness balances everything really well, too.

Highly Recommended (48% of all whiskies I’ve reviewed to date get this recommendation or higher).

Value: Average. Par for the course, in terms of value for whisky taste, at $96. Especially (or only?) if you like smoky whiskies.


Review (2020)

  • Batch: N/A

  • Bottling Code: MBA 12.03.19 19/17

  • Bottling Date: 2019

Rich, farmy, medicinal peat. Iodine, seaweed, rockpools, ash, white pepper, vanilla, burning leaves, wet and mossy fields, creamy oak, vanilla yoghurt, and a nice light oiliness. The palate is big, smoky, earthy, ashy, creamy. Ashtrays, baking spice, vanilla, and a good dollop of smoke on the finish.

Highly Recommended (50% of all whiskies I’ve reviewed to date get this recommendation or higher).

Value: Average, at around $100.