Whisky Review: Isle of Raasay “While We Wait”

Style: Fruity and slightly Smoky

Nose:
Fresh apples, smoked toffee drizzling on a green, meaty malt. The aroma is pleasingly rich and oily. Grapes with vines, popcorns, the sweetness opens up to bubble gum, bright ester fruits laced with hot chilli spice. Mineral notes, peppermint, smoked ham rubbed with just a touch of vinegar. Very young, but quite pleasant.

Palate:
Orchard fruits slowly fused with caramel popcorn, while smoked hay circling some rich citrus confectionaries and grape gummies. All sweet, rich and oily at the core. Digging deeper we have some green herbs stacking over a deep layer of malt. Light vanilla brushing around the core, tropical fruits, coconut jelly with a subtle Eau de vie tail. Smoked barley showing the drier side of the spirit. Young, but not raw.

Finish:
Soft malt-barley hybrid mixing with agar agar and diluted orange juice.

Thoughts:
Another budding distillery under the current whisky boom, fascinating times for whisky drinkers, isn’t it? Now Isle of Raasay Distillery has commissioned in 2017 so we will expect the distillery’s first whisky in 2020. While we are waiting, voila, we have this pseudo-OB to play with. On the label it says, “Distilled in the Highlands for R&B Distillers, in anticipation of our future production on Raasay.”, so I suppose it is an indication of what R&B Distillers envision their whisky will be like in the future. Now, judging from the profile, this feels like a lighter version of Ben Nevis by using soft wine casks to finish and a higher proportion of unpeated spirit, resulting a light, fruity whisky but also retain a decent level of texture and oiliness. Interesting choice, but I think it has worked out pretty well. Hopefully the guys in Raasay can emulate this style in their future endeavours. All the best!

✓ [Recommend if you like the style/distillery]

[46% | Original Bottling | 2018 Bottled | No Age Statement | Bottle Number: 9163 | Non Chill Filtered | Non Coloured | Finished in Tuscan Red Wine Casks | T]

-Esmond