Those who have been following the Octomore series will know 7.2 was a Travel Retail exclusive - unfortunate for dedicated fans, but hardly surprising given the growth and increasing sophistication of a market which now sees Grand Marques like Macallan pledging prestige expressions for travellers. Small parcels of 7.2 did leak into retail stores in Europe, but Australia completely missed out. Thankfully we've managed to secure a quantity for local peat freaks.
".2” usually designates a wine finished Octomore, and this release which weighs in at a hefty 208 PPM combines five year old spirit matured in American oak casks as well as casks which previously held Syrah (a.k.a Shiraz) from the Northern Rhone. As usual this is a completely natural expression, bottled at 58.5% ABV. It's also an Octomore that requires air contact and patience to reveal its fullest. Once you've poured your glass, find a comfortable armchair and let the show begin.
Tasting note: Bright gold with an amber / orange blush. A typical melange of amazing Octomore aromatics opens with penetrating scents of choc fudge, wool-shed, kipper and burnt orange. Second pass highlights a smoked fish note amid flashes of liquorice bullets and barley sugar. Five minutes air contact sees the olfactory merry-go-round come full circle as the earthy farmyard aspect recovers, before finally turning mezcal-like, hinting at beeswax, old oil rag and barbeque. Entry immediately highlights the astonishing balance of this whisky; a delicious malt delivery that's also peppery, briny, earthy, sooty-yet-creamy; then tingly with lashings of lanolin and liquorice bullet towards the finish. Aftertaste is mildly salty with lanolin and choc-cherry flavours in a receding tide of all things peaty. The extraordinary persistence of some previous editions is less obvious, but more-so than others, this deserves a warning label: Not only amazingly complex, but also dangerously easy to drink, testimony to the impeccable balance and sheer quality of young spirit on offer here. Non chill-filtered. 58.5% Alc./Vol.