March 10, 2016

IT'S THE PEATIEST MALT EVER MADE!!!! MUHAHAHAHAHAHA - Bruichladdich Octomore 6.3 Review

Leave it to our friends at Bruichladdich to pull an Emeril. Just when we thought they couldn't go any farther with the young fiery smoky beasts they've been breeding at their evil fortress in Islay, they turn it up a notch - BAM. We honestly thought it had to be a typo - 258 parts per million?? Impossible!

We thought peat levels over a hundred were insane when Ardbeg Supernova came out. But not to be outdone, Bruichladdich Octomore 5.1 set the bar at 169 ppm. This held the trophy for some years. But while we were safely in our beds under the covers, thinking that the peat armageddon had ended, they were hard at work cooking up even more insanity. And here we are with Octomore 6.3 at a nose hair singing, face melting, 258 parts per million. Strap in and get ready to rock.

Nose: At 64%, 128 proof, this stuff should be absolute rocket fuel.  But I've got my nose buried in here and I'd never believe these numbers.  258 ppm x 64%? The nose has tons of hay and wet grass going on, some white chocolate, but overall it's super dry. Almost like a white wine sort of aroma. Then we get orange rind and mango appearing for little sweet tail ends on the nose. This is super intriguing and not at all what we were expecting.

Palate: The peat and heat definitely come through on the palate. It's like you can chew on that peat. And it's freakin AWESOME. It really doesn't have that ashtray quality that some Laphroaigs and Port Charlottes have going on. This is like a dry cracking peat. Huge and warm but still super clean and invigorating.

Finish: I don't think it ever will! :)  If it ever finishes we'll let you know. So far the dry "waves of grain" peated barley (it's like you can really taste the individual grains growing out of the ground) have nestled deep in my stomach and now are slowing creeping up my chest. It comes back across the back of the throat with a luscious campfire smoke and little pops of scotch bonnet peppers and rock salt. Opening the mouth the dry crisp flavors return for a sensational finish.

Review: This is such a unique malt it's hard to really review it. If you are peat-obsessed like us, you're going to adore it. But not in the slap-my-ass-and-call-me-Sally way you'd expect. It's like Mike Tyson meets Vivaldi. A whole lot of insane punch, but it's all very elegant and well crafted. Really one of a kind. I'd say you definitely have to be a peat maniac for this to be up your alley, but at the same time it's not a totally fiery raw burn. Not sure if that makes sense, but that's the impression.  Bravo to Bruichladdich for one of the best peat monsters we've ever tasted.



  1. Hey!

    I wanted to bring a bit of chemistry truth to your post: It may indeed be the peatiest malted barley ever used but that doesn't mean it's the peatiest whisky and here's why:

    The barley may have been purposely malted at 258 parts per million BUT once it goes through the process of being wetted, mashed, fermented, distilled, re-distilled and then aged (and the longer it sits in a barrel, the ppm goes down even more) the 258ppm is reduced and the WHISKY is now somewhere around 40-50ppm... The only whisky on the market that I'm aware of that gives true PPM for the liquid inside the bottle is AncNoc who cleary state on the bottle the parts per million of the whisky. Hope that helps clarify what actually happens when it comes to ppm in whisky.


    1. Fascinating! Admittedly I always assumed it was the finished product when the ppm was measured. Looks like Ancnoc peats out at 20ppm. I wonder what the actual peat levels of octomore are in the bottle??? Hmm who do we know with a peaty thingamobobulator for hire? Thanks Lassie. /Beastie

  2. That is really great information. I didn't know that either.