Kilchoman (pron. Kil-Ho-Man), is the first distillery to be established on Islay in over 124 years. It was started in 2005 by Anthony Wills, who ran an independent single cask bottling company for 8 years, and was immersed in building the ultimate farm distillery, where he’d take Whisky back to its roots.
The Kilchoman distillery is unique for several reasons. It's one of only six Scotch distilleries to carry out traditional floor maltings, and one of only two to do the malting, distilling, maturing and bottling on premise. Furthermore, they grow their own Barley on the farm itself, whereas most other distilleries purchase it around the country (or even abroad). They use 30% of their own barley, and the balance is purchased from Port Ellen Maltings. It’s one of the smallest Scotch distilleries, with an annual output of 120,000 litres, and when you talk about artisanal, this is as good as it gets with Scotch Whisky. They've been rocking it ever since they started, and we should all be mega excited to see where it leads to next.
Machir Bay is their main product. It's a vatting of 4 and 5-year-old Bourbon cask matured Whisky, Oloroso-finished malt. The 2012 was awarded a Gold Medal at the 2012 International Wine and Spirit Competition, and it was also named Whisky of the Year at the International Whisky Competition. While the 2013 did not get as many awards, it's still one of the most exciting new Scotch releases out there, with a different style than you'd expect from an Islay Scotch. Still peated, mind you, but just different. It's more subdued, expressed differently. It's released once a year, so we're keen to see how they progress year-by-year.
Member Reviews and Ratings of Kilchoman Machir Bay
Box was never received, I sent an email to you and response was a new one would be sent if you got it back. Delivery company was of no help whatsoever.
If you like the taste of house fire, this has it written all over it!
It does have a bitter aftertaste. Smoky.
Nice taste overall but it is on the smokey side, does have a nice small hint of butterscotch. The smoke taste is not as strong as the smell but over all could enjoy in small doses.
Very strong smoke notes on the nose is a little intimidating, but the smoke taste wasn't nearly as strong. It's there, but it is nicely balanced. I agree it tastes more like a smokey Irish whisky than a typical Scotch but I really liked it, and I'm more of a bourbon person. Light bodied.
This tastes like an Irish whiskey that someone added liquid smoke to. Then they added more, and more, and then some more. If you like the smokey taste this has more than a cigar.
The smell of smoke is one thing...I don't want to feel like I inhaled a campfire. I like scotch and this is highly disappointing.
Notes of citrus, pepper and caramel. Not heavy. Classic Islay smoke. Well balanced.
Peaty, but I don't think it as smokey as claimed by many. Very peppery and lively butterscotch on the front. Not as much depth as an older malt. Will be looking forward to more mature offerings from Kilchoman.
Very peaty. Smells like a campfire. Long aftertaste of campfire. Reminds me of camping.
Not sure if I got a bad batch, but it smelled and tasted like formaldehyde. It was the worst I've ever had bar none. Undrinkable.
Tasted like drinking liquified burnt plastic. I could not even finish the sample.
Very Smokey smell but great taste offsets peat.
The aroma was reminiscent of wet tobacco, and the taste was exactly the same. Bitter aftertaste with a good bit of oil on top. The mixture of peat with smoke was overpowering and destroyed the palate. The oily layer coated the tongue and made for a difficult to stand few minutes. After trying straight up, I tried on the rocks, and with a small bit of distilled water to remove the oily top. Neither method changed or improved the taste.
For a scotch lover, this was just poor. Had quite a similar taste and aroma to Lapsang Souchong tea. Did not deliver on the typical earthy tones or nuttiness of a peat. Seems to have been laden with too much smoke in an effort to create a lasting experience. The experience certainly lasted, but this smoke was overwhelming and poorly received.
Could definitely taste the straw and hay along with the pepper and lemon and smoke
Smoky, but not overpoweringly so. It has a warm flavor, but not dull at all. I has a sweet-ish aftertaste that is somewhat like dark chocolate. One of my go-to scotch whiskies.
Like drinking a campfire. Warms you right up. BUT. For the same price, I would go for the Laphroaig Quarter Cask.
Very nice smoky flavor, very smooth.
I loved it. A nice, light, peaty whisky that is perfect for a crisp, cool, sunset.
Yuck. Don't care for this at all. The smoky plus peaty just doesn't taste good. The after taste isn't good and lingers for a very long time. After taste reminds me of Band-Aids. Full disclosure: I tend to dislike smoky liquors in general.
I really like this whisky, definitely a good representation of an intro to islay. Smokey, peaty, with a sweet touch after breaking through the smoke. This, however, is not a good intro to scotch. If you have not had scotch, start with a Highland or Speyside. Stay away from Islay, or peated whisky, until you are ready for a kick in the pants!
Sweet taste to it, smoky, some pepper taste, and it’s a bit peaty but not to peaty. I don’t like peaty whiskeys but this one I like. It’s smooth.
Clearly I don't care for peaty.
Was wonderfully smokey, but not as smokey as Laphroaig, There was also a hint of sweet sea salt on the end. Really surprised by this one.
Love it, really like the idea of the tasting sample
Unique and delicious
Super smokey and peating !! I can see how it wouldn't be for everyone... But it is de' bomb for me !!
The peat was so strong, I was still tasting it almost an hour after drinking it.
My favorite scotch so far. Seemed a bit smoky or peaty but I liked it!
This was terrible. Smells and tastes like cough syrup.
Bold, touches the nose. On the rocks, has the faint odor of wet tobacco.
I can’t imagine what kind of palate you’d need to have to think this tasted good. I thought I was drinking a liquid hockey puck for all the rubbery / polymer flavor I was getting from it.
Fantastically party. Great aroma. Smokey taste lingers for hours.
If I could give it 0 stars, I would. I felt like I was drinking mulch. There are no words to describe quite how terrible this tastes.
This was the most unpalatable thing I have ever tasted.
That was harsh.
Holy smokes! This was a peat bomb and went really well with some korean beef ssam. Definitely a malt you would want to pair with some good bar b que. Although this isn't something for me, my father in law would love this.
I guess I do not like peaty. This was awful. I have never poured out alcohol before but this was the first. Smelled... almost medicinal plasticy? Everything tasted burnt and charred smoke, but so overwhelmingly that any other notes were lost. Choked out I probably should say.. Steer clear Flaviar please remove this trash from your welcome taster!
This was nasty. The first observation was that it smelled like a wet ashtray - that's not a good 'smoky' aroma. The taste wasn't much better.
Very poor flavor with no back end. It tasted like the hearts were just put into the bottle with no aging.
Islay single malts are either love 'em or hate 'em. There doesn't seem to be an in-between. I love this whiskey. It is spectacular and very much what I'd expect from an Islay. It will be fun to see what comes out of this distillery once they've been around for a while. They're still pretty young, yet.
Far too smokey for my taste...
Abso-f-ing-lutely not. Undrinkable. I hate this kind of scotch - not anyone's fault - but you hit on the one thing I hate to drink. I would rather drink mineral spirits.
I didn't get the smokey taste - this was pure peat with a chemical aftertaste. I like campfires, and smoke (I make a wicked smoked brisket), but this is simply an affront to good smoke.
One could perhaps say that this is my grand-mothers luggage left in the airport for too long. It reminded me of that.
Also, I rarely rate anything a one star - and remember this is my taste preference. But, I can't be un-biased. This type of scotch is awful.
Nearly undrinkable... I never would have tried this but it was part of the starter set... There was a forest fire on the same day I tried this... I found the air outside to be refreshing after smelling this ash tray
Very tasty. Love the smoky taste. It does not stand out over other Islay scotches but still very good.
Too much pete and smoke for me. A bit harsh on the pallet.
There was a lot of smokey taste, but it is a disgusting drink. Tastes and smells like some awful medicine that has a very powerful aftertaste. Not worthy.
Too smokey for my taste. Will not order this one.
0 stars if possible. Absolutely disgusting
Very peat forward, smokey with a long finish. Hard if you don’t like that flavor combination as it lingers
For sure one of the best tasting Smokey scotch I've ever had. The flavor doesnt hit you hard but it is the first thing you'll taste. Personally I am not a fan of this much smoke and I wouldn't purchase this. But it is very good, and I surely enjoyed the drink. This is perfect with a cigar.
So far I am 0/2 on liking scotch. May not be my thing, or maybe I haven't found a good scotch yet. This tasted awful to my group of family and I when we tried this in a sampler.
Not really my thing at this point but I am new to be fair. Taste a bit too medicinal for me. If that is what people mean by “peaty”, then I don’t see it working for me. Got better with a little water added though.
Not too much peat. It’s a very nice Scotch.
I personally felt is wasn't very well balanced and at times just finished with an artificial taste
Definitely not a fan of the Smokey/peat flavor
Peaty isn't my thing, but this is pretty good. Smoky. Tastes like it's drinkable in a high end bar with big plush chairs.
Tasted like it needed a few more years in the cask
Contrary to what others say, I love the smokey taste and smokey flavor. I can smell fruity notes, but can't exactly taste them. The after taste isn't smokey and does stay with you for a bit. I'd say this is an enjoyable everyday Scotch that can use to tune the day out. I added a small ice cube to define it more on the relaxing side.
I couldn't stop smelling it. Great scotch!
Horrible, with a nauseating aftertaste. I had to check twice to confirm I want drinking something better suited to cleaning paintbrush or at the very least a pine cleaner.
Love scotch. But one comment in here sums it up perfectly for me... like drinking a campfire.
Maybe it’s good scotch but I couldn’t tell you because I hate scotch I tried it but couldn’t do it
Did not like this at all. Way to smokey and not a fan of the peat.
Love! I can't stop smelling it! Smoke, butter, salty air, ocean, peat and more. So complex. Then the taste, peat, smoke, salt, hay, caramel, rich mouth feel. This tastes far more mature than it's relatively young age.
Enjoy the smell of the smoke. The pepper hung on my tongue and I got a little of sweet when came down.
Nice, but is my first scotch taster, so will wait then make decision on purchase.
Can't figure out what it is but this one didn't appeal to me. Too strong. With a little water, the flavour came through without the strength and it was nice but still not my favourite.
Surprisingly complex, given the pale colour. Strong smoke on the nose, but not nearly as harsh on the palate. A very smooth, clean finish, with a pleasant amount of smoke lingering. A good introductory whisky for someone looking to dip their toes into the smoky waters.
I literally cannot get enough of the smell of this fine whisky. I feel kinda weird saying this, but I huff it because it's so good. But lest you think that it's all fumes, I guarantee that the taste is at least as good as the smell!
I purchased this one day as I was looking for a well priced Islay. While this is a midrange for most scotches of this year, I felt the flavor and peatyness was excellent. I just picked up a second bottle. YUM!
Very enjoyable dram from the youngest of the Islay family
Increíble producto.. súper recomendado ..!
I tried. Scotch is just not for me. I'll stick to Irish and bourbon.
Like a fine athlete cut down in his prime. I lament that this expression could not have developed fully. To call this scotch young would be like calling veal a steak. If you enjoy moonshine, you'll likely enjoy this. Still better than 2 Gingers radiator wash though.
Definitely on the young side, but there is so much going on here. Not as peaty as many Islays, but the peat is still appropriately present. Malt shines through as does many other notes (light fruit, sherry, and yes a hint of the ocean as others have posted).
Every pour from the bottle reveals more complexity. This is one of my current favorites. I'm looking forward to the upcoming offerings from this distillery.
Really like it
Far surpassed my expectations. Great balance of peat and sweet. New top 5.
This is a delicious and satisfying Scotch that punches above its weight. A must buy for any Islay lover at this price. It smells heavenly and balances the sweet and peat perfectly on your tongue. Water of life indeed!
Lovely smooth flavour less peaty than the southern distilleries
Heavy on the smoke with a slight butterscotch overtone.
Young scotch, peaty without a lot of smoke. Nice pear like finish.
Not for the faint of heart, great smokey peat
Flavor, not a rookie scotch. Complex and wonderful
A smooth young spirit great for an end of the day drink.
Like drinking a campfire. Too... much...peat
Wow! For such a youthful spirit it's got so much going on. Light peat with a punchy oceanic note. Grain and barley flavors interspersed with surprisingly fruity pear and grappa notes. Love this stuff!
Hail to the peat! Delicious.
From ordering, to receiving, to the first taste. Highly recommended
long live the peat
I've been drinking this as my go to since I found it about six months ago.