Malts of Scotland Images of Islay - MacArthur's Head Lighthouse

Malts of Scotland Images of Islay MacArthur's Head Lighthouse
Picture: Whiskybase

German independent bottler Malts of Scotland revealed a new Images of Islay series in 2013. Every bottle is marked with a distinguished landmark. The mark itself gives a clue to the distillery providing the cask.

MacArthur's Head lighthouse guards the entrance Islay and watches over the ferry route to Port Askaig. And what lies near the harbour? Indeed, Diageo's mega distillery Caol Ila. A frequent supplier of quality independent bottlings.

Identity Card Malts of Scotland Images of Islay - MacArthur's Head Lighthouse

  • Independent bottling for Malts of Scotland
  • NAS single malt Scotch whisky single cask
  • Alcohol: 53.2% ABV
  • 236 bottles

Young, rough and rash rich kid

Tasting Notes

Colour: This whisky is very pale. Light yellow, like certain grappas. I think this one is fairly young. There is almost no sign of legs after swirling the glass.

Nose: The youngster does not attempt to hide its heimat. A first nosing reveals medicinal notes and peat smoke, supported by vanilla and malt. Charcoal, wet soil, potting soil, humus. Earthy is the perfect descriptor. The second nosing transports you to a chemical facility. Paint, sulphur, and burning rubber. This MacArthur's is a quite aggressive fellow.

Taste: The palate affirms his loud-mouth braggart (Army of Darkness, anyone?) attitude. Again rubber, lighted matches and plastic. Water calms it down with notes of pepper, lemon and cut grass.

Finish: The finish is relatively long. You're chewing on some Play-Doh. Eventually, it sweetens a little bit.


Wham! What a beastly dram! It treats you to everything Islay has to offer. Not even two years ago I would not have finished this glass. Luckily my palate evolved and I enjoyed it!

A bottle costs approximately € 66. An honest price for a NAS of an independent bottler. Available in specialist stores. I bought my own sample at The Bonding Dram.

The identity? I'm putting my money on a 5-year old Caol Ila from a refill bourbon barrel.