Isle of Raasay Single-Malt Scotch Whisky Range

Located on a small and weather-beaten island, between Scotland’s mainland and the Isle of Skye, you will find the picturesque Isle of Raasay.

Raasay is a stunning location to visit at the best of times, but if you’re partial to a wee dram or two you’ll find it especially interesting as it is home to the isle’s very first legal distillery when it was opened back in 2017.

The Isle of Raasay Distillery is owned by R&B Distillers and is already proving to be a huge hit amongst Scotch whisky lovers (including ourselves) due simply to the fact that the Scotch they produce is truly exceptional.

The distillery uses water from a Celtic Iron Age well which is packed full of minerals (who says whisky is bad for you?) thanks to the sandstone and volcanic rock on the island. They distil the whisky in copper pot stills and mature it on the island in a selection of fine oak casks, and a few surprises along the way.

The Isle of Raasay itself is a stunning part of the Inner Hebrides, and if you’d like to visit for yourself, the distillery also features an award-winning visitor centre, along with a six-bedroomed hotel.

While we could talk about how stunning Raasay is, and how amazing the distillery and visitor centre is, it’s the whisky we’re here to talk to you about today. So, put another log on the fire, get your best slippers on, pour yourself another dram, and let’s find out about the Isle of Raasay’s range of exceptional whiskies.

Isle of Raasay Signature Single Malt Scotch

Despite having only been in operation since 2017, Isle of Raasay whisky is already well established in the highly convoluted world of whisky, and is proving to be a huge hit. Their most famous whisky is their flagship Signature Single Malt Scotch Whisky, which was first released in 2020. That’s the tipple we’re going to kick things off with today.

This non-chill filtered whisky is a gorgeous light honey colour, which is all-natural. The barley used is malted from Highland peat to give a rich smokiness and an extra depth of flavour.

Their signature single-malt is matured in first fill ex-rye whiskey casks, ex-red wine Bordeaux casks, and virgin Chinkapin oak casks. It is released in both a peated, and unpeated variety in alternate years.

 

The whisky, which has an ABV of 46.4% has a wonderful and rich mouthfeel, coupled with a gentle throat warming that helps it slip down dangerously well, particularly on those cold, dark, wet nights we’re so accustomed to over here.

On the nose you should get baked plum crumble, coupled with rich morello cherries, toasted oak, sweet vanilla, earthy woodsmoke, and a touch of seaweed. There’s a lot going on here, and we love that.

On the palate, the mineral-rich influence of the water really becomes apparent, giving way to notes of sweet caramel and toffee. Digestive biscuits then shine through, along with creamy malt and toasted oats, scorched oak, and rich clotted cream vanilla ice cream.

The finish is long and complex, offering a touch of salted peanut brittle, bonfire smoke, sweet maple charred oak, and buttery toffee sweets.

Isle of Raasay Tourism Destination of the Year Release

Remember how we said that the Isle of Raasay distillery was an award-winning destination? Well, to celebrate this fact, the Isle of Raasay distillery have released their Tourism Destination of the Year Release whisky.

Unveiled at the 2022 Scottish Whisky Awards, this release was created to celebrate the fact that the distillery picked up the prestigious Tourism Destination of the Year Award, after less than five years of operation. A special award deserved a special whisky, and the team over at the Isle of Raasay distillery certainly created that.

Using a combination of ex-Manzanilla Pasada and Sherry casks, the whisky is a deep golden straw colour, reminiscent of cream Sherry, and has plenty of sweet and salty aromas to reflect the maritime coastal influence of the island’s climate.

At 52% ABV, it certainly has a kick, but surely, that’s what you want from a Scotch?

On the nose you should be able to immediately pick up aromas of sea salt, sticky dates and prunes, a touch of honey, and toasted oak.

On the palate, toffee and vanilla should shine through immediately, closely followed by salted caramel, marzipan, and chamomile tea.

The finish is smooth and rich, with more almond and caramel notes coming through, with a hint of sweet toasted oak in the background. It’s very moreish indeed.

Isle of Raasay Dun Cana Sherry Quarter Cask Release

As we write this, we’re a matter of weeks away from Christmas. When you think of Christmas, other than a Great Dram of course *wink wink* there’s another tipple you immediately think of, and that other tipple is Sherry. What happens when you combine the two together? Magic happens, that’s what!

Available in peated and unpeated varieties (the best of both worlds perhaps) this single malt Scotch is first matured in American Rye whiskey casks, before being matured for a second time in Oloroso and Pedro Ximenez Sherry quarter casks.

Those of you who really enjoy the smoky, throat burn that you get with some Scotch, you’ll want to try their peated variety, which has an ABV of 52%. If you like your Scotch a little more mellow and smoother, their unpeated with an ABV of 45% is going to be perfect.

Non-chill filtered, and naturally coloured, it has a deep walnut brown colour that looks particularly stylish in contrast with the lavender purple on the packaging.

On the nose, you should be able to pick up ripe summer berries, figs, sticky prunes, and a touch of smoke.

On the palate, the peppery spiciness comes through, balanced out perfectly by the salted caramel notes, dried sultanas, and vanilla honey.

The finish is surprisingly smooth, leaving you with a dark chocolate finish, coupled with a touch of toasted oak smoke.

Isle of Raasay Na Sia Single Cask Series

Last but not least, we have the Isle of Raasay Na Sia Single Cask Series.

Finished in virgin Chinkapin Oak casks, this expression perfectly represents the distillery’s six unique single-malt recipe casks – three for peated, and three for unpeated.

In Gaelic, Na Sia means ‘The Six’ and if ever there was a whisky that told the story of this wonderful new distillery, this is very much it. Both their peated and unpeated varieties of single malt are separately matured in first fill ex-Rye whiskey, Chinkapin Oak, and first fill Bordeaux red wine casks.

Their virgin Chinkapin oak single cask bottling is a particularly moreish dram, that is doing incredibly well. Native to central and eastern North America, the casks are freshly charred, caramelising the wood’s natural sugars to give the whisky an amazing roasted amber colour.

Naturally coloured, and non-chill filtered, the whisky has an ABV of a whopping 62.1% ABV. Be warned, this is not for those new to Scotch.

On the nose, the caramelisation of the wood really comes through, offering aromas of maple syrup, butterscotch, and toffee. Sweet oak smoke is hiding in the background, just begging to be discovered.

On the palate, rich and vibrant overripe dark fruits will immediately be present, coupled with vanilla pods, toasted oats, oak, and salted caramel.

The finish is lengthy and complex, offering plenty of burn, with an underlying vanilla cream smoothness, combined with fresh blackberries and cherries. Again, there is definitely a smoky note to be detected.

If you’re looking for a selection of rare, award-winning, limited-edition, and delicious single-malt Scotch Whisky just like the ones listed above, be sure to head on over to the Greatdrams.com website and check out the selection of amazing drams we have available.

Here you’ll find all manner of different whiskies, primarily Scotch, to suit all palates and budgets.

Whether you’re looking for smooth and creamy, a harsh and smoky dram, tart and fruity, peated or unpeated like those listed above, or anything in between, here at Great Drams, we’ve got everything  you need, and plenty more besides.  

Tags: Isle of RaasayScotch WhiskyvSingle Malt
Greg

Greg

My name is Greg, and I’m a brand strategy consultant, writer, speaker, host and judge specialising in premium spirits. My mission is to experience, share and inspire with everything great about whisky, whiskey, gin, beer and fine dining through my writing, my brand building and my whisky tastings.

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