Octomore 8.3 is part of the Masterclass series which focuses on "uber-provenance" (one farm, one field and one vintage), it is also the most heavily-peated Octomore at time of release, at 309ppm! Distilled in 2011 and bottled as a 5yo, 56% of the whisky was matured in first-fill ex-bourbon casks and the remaining 44% matured in European oak (Paulliac, Ventoux, Rhone and Burgundy casks). Only 18,000 bottles produced. Bottled at cask strength of 61.2%.
Nose: Toasted oak and muddy/peaty smoke along with bandages, maple syrup, fresh linen and sea shells. Heather and peat moss follow with cherry, peach and mango moving to crème brulee and toffee.
Palate: Initially a surprise as the stellar level of peat is bitter and over-whelming. Another sip opens with up with cherry and peach and toasted sweet oak, dark chocolate, boot polish and seaweed.
Finish: Complex, crème brulee with caramelised brown sugar slightly overdone. Dark plum, orange and kiwi sit well with the malted barley sweetness. Tremendous peat smoke with roasted coffee and burnt heather.