Back to the crime scene: we tasted the 2015 version of Machir Bay. Now we have in the glass the further edition. It’s a best seller (at Milan Whisky Festival and Craftmanship Fair was sold out), with an interesting value for money. It’s a vat of ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks (80:20 ratio), as you can easily read on the box. As you know, last October we visited the most artisanal Scotch distillery, and we’d love to link again our wordy reportage (two parts: here the first, here the second).
N: the alcohol is very discrete, it allows you to enjoy the flavors. A pronounced seaworthiness suddenly wants the footlights, with sea breeze and something remembering a ship in the storm (wow!). In the background there’s a crisp sweetness, not exaggerated but shy and warm. Vanilla and hay: cereal, indeed. Candied citrus fruits, maybe cedar? Do you remember those green jelly beans? Are they cedar or green apple flavored? Anyway, really sweet. Apple juice. The eucalyptus reminds us the peat smoke, dense, heavy and pungent, but perfectly integrated.
P: comparing to the nose, it’s unexpectedly intense and explosive. Consistency: we’re still at the seaside and we gobble some sea water while we’re swimming. There’s a sense of earthy peat, rough and vegetal, that stays with you the whole time. This peatiness is gracefully kneaded with a persistent sweetness, which reminds confetti, apple juice, vanilla and almonds. Cocoa beans. A hint of eucalyptus.
F: heavy, dense and chemical peat. Chocolate.
A perfect example of islander malt, with all the trimmings: it shows all the qualities you could look for in a peaty monster and it has also its own personality. The successful combination between intensity and complexity really win our hearts. And the many variations on the marine&sweet pattern give some extra points (the small sherry share is easily detectable). Maybe our memory is deceitful (and the comparison would be more accurate with a simultaneous tasting), but it seems to us a little bit better than the 2015 release. 87/100: not bad for a 45 euro entry level…
Recommended soundtrack: Hiss Golden Messenger – Like a Mirros Loves a Hammer.