KWM 2022 Whisky Calendar Day 20: Boutique-y Inchfad - Batch 1 - 13 Year
Posted on December 20, 2022
Day 20 is here – we are very much in the homestretch of our 2022 KWM Whisky Calendar with only five more bottles to go. Today we are hopefully taking a turn for the weird and interesting with this bottle of Boutique-y Inchfad - Batch 1 - 13 Year!
This is our fourth mini bottle from That Boutique-y Whisky Company so far for the 2022 KWM Whisky Calendar. As with the other three, Andrew, and Dave Worthington of That Boutique-y Whisky Company, have collaborated on a video, where they talk about the label and taste the whisky. You can find that video on YouTube here.
There are a few of what I like to think of as unofficial traditions that have survived multiple years of the KWM Whisky Calendar. For one: there is usually at least one of our own KWM single casks hiding behind one of the doors. Another is we almost always have a bottle from Kilchoman in there.
Two more recent traditions have cropped up over the past three years. The first is finally getting Andrew to let me inflict Bourbon upon the Calendar and those that consume it. The second is something I can’t take any credit for but nevertheless am very happy about: having Loch Lomond Distillery highlighted within.
What does this have to do with this bottle and why did I say weird and interesting? Well, Inchfad is a style of whisky made at Loch Lomond Distillery. ‘Nuff said, right? Well, perhaps not. For those of you new to Loch Lomond Distillery, here is the reason I typed that:
Founded in 1965, Loch Lomond is a bizarre operation that is capable of making multiple different styles of spirit all under one roof. The distillery can produce Single Malt, Single Grain, and Blended Whisky entirely at one site. It can and does this, and it also makes Single Malt in a wide variety of styles, including both peated and unpeated types.
There are a total of thirteen stills within the Loch Lomond Distillery, however, they are not all the same. Included in this number are your typical swan-neck style pot stills: the type you see at most Scottish distilleries that make single malt whisky. Beyond that though, things get weird. There are also three pairs of straight-neck pot stills, which are sometimes called Lomond stills. One of these pairs has a water-cooling system installed on the top of the still that the heated vapour hits before going through the narrowing neck/pipe for collection. This results in much more reflux and leads to a lighter, softer, fruitier spirit being produced.
Last but certainly not least, there is a six-story Coffey/column still that is split in two to accommodate the three-story building it resides in. This still is used to distill malted barley, but due to SWA regulations, it is still classified as a Single Grain spirit. The whisky made with this still is used in their blends, but you can occasionally find it bottled as Rhosdhu by indie bottlers. Heck, there are even sometimes peated runs of this 100% malted barley column still whisky. Because just making one style of grain whisky from malted barley is definitely note enough!
With this unusual and seemingly haphazard combination of stills and whisky styles they create, Loch Lomond Distillery can produce its own blended whisky entirely on-site without sourcing whisky from other distilleries. It is one of the very active distilleries in the world able to do so.
Loch Lomond as a brand currently has three product lines for the different styles the distillery is capable of producing. Inchmurrin is the unpeated, lighter and fruity side of Single Malt Scotch. Inchmoan represents the meatier, heavily peated end of the spectrum. Loch Lomond itself covers the space in between, focusing on a moderately peated style that still showcases plenty of fruity notes. Other names have been used on bottles in the past or on indie bottles as well - such as Croftengea and the Inchfad we have in front of us today; both of which are amongst the Loch Lomond's peated styles.
Along with Inchmurrin and Inchmoan, Inchfad is one of three "Inch"es and a slew of other names/labels made by Loch Lomond Distillery. Also like many of the styles of whisky made at Loch Lomond Distillery since it started production in 1965, Inchfad gets its name from one of the islands within the freshwater lake that the distillery takes its name from.
Now, it is time to dive in and embrace whatever strangeness this whisky throughs at us!
Along with Inchmurrin and Inchmoan, Inchfad is one of three "Inch"es and a slew of other names/labels made by Loch Lomond Distillery. Also like many of the styles of whisky made at Loch Lomond Distillery since it started production in 1965, Inchfad gets its name from one of the islands within the freshwater lake the distillery takes its name from. This Boutique-y Inchfad is 13 years old and bottled at 49.5%.
Evan’s Tasting Note
Nose: Oily and funky with a touch of copper and cheddar cheese. Mango puree, marmalade, mushrooms cooking in a frying pan, chamomile tea, and pear slices.
Palate: Riesling-like in its delivery. More rich and juicy mango along with vanilla cake frosting, Burrata cheese in olive oil with just a touch of lemon and rosemary, graham crackers and rich honey.
Finish: Honey and fuzzy peach candies and spicey heat without the smoky fire to go along with it.
Comment: The peat on this is nearly Highland Park-esque – it is more spice and umami than smoke. If the Orkney distillery and Campbeltown’s Glen Scotia got together and had a baby, the result would be this Inchfad. An awesome dram!
I will have to revisit this dram because it is easily in my top five bottles in the 2022 KWM Whisky Calendar thus far. It may even end up giving The Boutique-y Teaninich competition as my favourite!
Twitter and Instagram: @sagelikefool
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