Kilchoman – Port Cask Matured Release Notes

Tasting Notes

Kilchoman Port Cask Release Sample
Kilchoman Port Cask Release Sample

Kilchoman’s Port Cask Matured release, the first of its kind from the distillery, is fully matured in ex Ruby Port casks allowing for the full influence of the port casks to be imparted into the whisky.

Anthony Wills, managing director of Kilchoman, said: “We experimented with a number of different cask types to see which ones worked for a full maturation term and the ruby port casks are exceptional at just 3 years old. The palate has a wonderful balance of port influence but maintains much of Kilchoman’s signature characteristics”.  It is bottled at 55% ABV and will be available in the UK from the end of August.

What Kilchoman Say


Mahogany with a touch of ruby.


Powerful, lemon and citrus notes.


Smoke right away, sweet with nutty milk chocolate character.


A heavy texture which drifts away to dry smoke with oakiness.

So enough talking, time to hear what we have to say.

Kirsty (@kirstyclarke29)


Fresh lemons straight away, punchy to start and then calming down and becoming softer and sweeter, like childhood homemade lemonade.   It becomes warmer, hot orange marmalade, and sticky eucalyptus honey merging together and drizzling over tender duck breast, bring both sweet and savoury, with a burnt toffee edge.   Warm hay and soft leather merge together, bringing a gentle grassiness with a robust leather backbone.  Then in comes that wonderful Kilchoman smoke, I’d know it anywhere.  Not overpowering, but dirty, sooty and mineral rich, the dying embers of a Viking ship, with the ashy undertones of torn up, scattered pages of a much loved book.


And in comes the smoke, it’s soft yet all consuming.  There’s a sweetness, almost incense like, the delicate flavours of homemade Turkish delight, just a gentle touch of sweet rose.  Next up is summer, rich ripe strawberries dancing among lemon peel and rosehips before collapsing into a heap with maraschino cherries and deep black grapes.  The sweetness carries on through the seasons as autumn enters with just a touch of damp earth, and moss covered oak trees.  There is a nuttiness from the cask which dries the sweetness up and lets the tannins take over, and as they do, you really get a feel for the oak, the sweetness is still there although the fruits have started to fade, they are quickly replaced with a rich good quality mocha, slightly buttery with just a hint of vanilla to finish.


Long, mouth coatingly rich, almost daring you to try to chew.  The sweetness lingers on, although constantly evolving.  The drier, tannic notes are superb and work perfectly to balance both the sweetness and the smoke, which swirls around your mouth the whole time.

Overall thoughts:

I love that it’s pink, certainly in the glass anyway.  The most beautiful delicate blush rose, but don’t let that fool you, the smoke picks this up and gives it a touch of a savoury edge.  It is classic Kilchoman, in that you would recognise it, but the port on this is simply stunning.  You can tell the time and energy spent picking exactly the right casks, you can taste the quality right away.  I love the delicate smoke that never leaves, but unassumingly caresses the whole palate.  Warming but never harsh, it would be easy to forget the ABV is a mighty 55%.  There will always be questions about NAS whisky and price, but believe me this is worth every penny.

Stewart (@stewartcraigon)


Fresh Kilchoman notes, so typical to this distillery.  Red currants, a small hint of milk chocolate, lemon, beautiful fresh cut grass, and the remnants of a burned out sparkler with its gentle smoke.


First taste, wow, lots of fruit and it hits you hard!  Some strawberries, raspberries and a slight touch of cherry.  This is followed with a beautiful warm feeling, slight smoke and some drops of honey.  The freshness has been replaced with a coal fire, warming you up and drawing you in.


Long, sumptuous, silky, and fruity with the smoke petering off into the night sky.

Overall thoughts:

A wonderful new dram from Kilchoman, the first sight of the pink liquid in the glass tempts you in and once you pick the glass up, you won’t put it down except to refill.  Absolutely gorgeous, port matured whisky done right.  Some of the more established distilleries should take note, this is how a port cask whisky should taste!

5 thoughts on “Kilchoman – Port Cask Matured Release Notes”

  1. Hmmm I must have been tasting something else…. it was the worst whisky I tasted in 2015…this is not how port cask should be

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