Kilchoman Duo: Fino Sherry Matured & Machir Bay Cask Strength

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Kilchoman have launched a pair of new whiskies; a fully fino sherry matured expression, and a turbo charged version of their flagship Machir Bay expression. The former whisky follows on from Kilchoman’s other limited editions which have consisted of whisky fully matured in port, madeira, sauternes, red wine, and STR casks amongst others. It’s a vatting of twelve fino sherry butts, all but one being first fill, and it’s bottled at 46%. Speaking of the release, Kilchoman Founder and Managing Director Anthony Wills sad: “We have previously bottled a fino sherry matured release for our Kilchoman Club members but this will be a first global release. It’s exciting to have a new cask type available for the Kilchoman followers to taste, the fresh green apple character certainly adds a new element to what we’ve released before.”

The second whisky is the Machir Bay Cask Strength Festive Edition, which is a 58.6% ABV version of their standard Machir Bay release. The recipe is exactly the same – it’s matured in a combination of bourbon and sherry casks – with the only difference being the bottling strength (and the packaging which, with it being ‘festive’, features sheep in Santa hats… naturally).

Let’s go.

Kilchoman Fino Sherry Matured
12 Fino Sherry Butts
10,500 bottles
46% ABV
£78.88 here

Nose: Salted peanuts, beach bonfire, lemon oils, a little mustard seed nip, some fennel, and a wee farmyard note too. Smouldering driftwood permeates the whole thing.

Palate: Sweet and salty, with salted caramel and salted popcorn alongside banana bread and demerara sugar. Some bourbon biscuits and sultana cake add depth, with rolling, coastal peat smoke.

Finish: A touch of leather and unlit cigar, along with smoked lemons and peat reek.

Kilchoman Machir Bay Cask Strength
Festive Edition
58.6% ABV
£55.95 here

Nose: Lots of green fruits – apple, pear, unripe pineapple, green bananas, and tomato vines. Then some creamy vanilla with white pepper and dry, earthy peat smoke.

Palate: Smoked lemon and lime, and more of those green banana and pear skin notes. Then coconut husk, smoked toffee, and a wee bit of sweet pipe tobacco.

Finish: A citrusy zing is tempered by earthy peat smoke and drying oak.

Overall: Both are delicious whiskies, with the Fino Sherry Matured expression showcasing the more coastal side of Kilchoman, and the Machir Bay Cask Strength providing a more fruit-forward dram. Nigh on eighty quid for the fino is a bit steep to be honest, by £55 for the souped up Machir Bay is pretty good value. A big dram with lots of flavour.




  1. I really appreciate the peaty character of these Islay whiskies. I always have at home a bottle of Kilchoman to share with friends…

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