Adelphi's Breath of the Isles 2007

”Speak To Me/Breath” 

Whisky Review # 950
Country: Scotland
Region: Isles
Brand: Adelphi's Breath of the Isles 2007
Type: Single Malt Single Cask Scotch Whisky
Age: 11 Years
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 58.7%
Maturation: Re-Fill Ex-Oloroso Sherry Cask - Bottled 2019
Chill Filtration: No
Price Range: US$ 100-120 (June 2022)
Price/Quality Ratio: 👎 Quite a stiff price for an 11 Year old Malt
Buying Advice: 👎 Better stay with the standard distillery bottlings.

Colour: Light Amber (Natural Color)


As we only know this Malt was distilled on the Isles it's fun to start nosing and see if we can unravel the secret. After having nosed this for half an hour or so I'll start by excluding Highland Park. Highland Park usually matures in Sherried Wood and this Sherry-Matured Breath of the Isles does not ring any HP bells in my head.  On the Nose this Breath o/t Isles feels relatively young and a bit thin. It's mainly Sweet but there are a few Bitter and Sour notes as well. It's mainly driven by (Dark) Dried Fruit, Sugar, Cocoa and Spices. The Peat & Smoke are there but not at all in a dominant way. The Re-Fill Sherry-cask notes are quite clear but they don't dominate either. The Alcohol is noticeable. The Nose is not bad but it lacks a bit of Power.

Main Aromas:

Sweet Barley, Butter Biscuits, Honey, Brown Sugar, Straw, Apricot-Filled Puff-Pastry, Dried Fruit like Plums, Raisins, Sultanas, Apples and Pineapple, Papaya Mousse with Creme de Cassis, Cocoa Powder, Nougat, Distant Smoke & Earthy Peat, Cardamom, Pepper and Garam Masala.

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Salted Caramel, Toffee, Vanilla, Fortified Wine, Pear, Lemon, Grapefruit, Wet Rocks, Brine, Iodine, Herbal Tea, Floral Soap, Leather, Cinnamon, Nutmeg Cloves and Aniseed. A little Petrol as well.


Young, Mainly Sweet and Medium-Dry. A few Bitter, Sour & Salty notes as well. The Alcohol is quite strong.

Main Flavours:

Malted and Toasted Barley, Salted Caramel, Honey, Wax, Dried Fruit like Sultanas, Raisins, Plums and Dates, Apricot-Flavored Puff-Pastry, Orange-flavored Bitter Dark Chocolate, Distant Smoke and Earthy Peat, Oak, Pepper, Garam Masala and Ginger.

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Vanilla, Brown Sugar, Nectarine, Lemon, Grapefruit, Apple, Pear, Lemon, Bounty Candy Bars, Wet Rocks, Leather, Herbal Tea, Cinnamon, Cloves, Nutmeg & Menthol.


Middle-Long, Sweet, Young, Waxy and Spicy. A little Bitterness towards the Medium-Dry end as well. The Pepper note is strong, pointing towards Talisker. It's not quite the same Pepper though. The Alcohol is quite strong at this point. I find Malted and Toasted Barley, Salted Caramel, Toffee, Vanilla, Heather-Honey, Wax, Distant Smoke and Earthy Peat, Dried Fruit like Plums, Sultanas, Raisins and Apricots, Nectarine, Apple, Pear, Orange-flavored Dark Chocolate, Creme de Cassis, Charred Oak, Lemon, Grapefruit, Garam Masala, Cloves, Nutmeg, Pepper, Ginger, Menthol, Ashes and Strong Espresso.

Drinking Advice:

Although the Aroma/Flavor profile does not change a whole lot with added Water, I certainly advise you to add a few drops as it helps to calm down the Alcohol.

Rating: 84.5  - Stars on a 1-10 scale: 7.5 (*******1/2)

Nose: 21.5 - Taste: 21 - Finish: 21 - Overall: 21

*** Important Note with respect to Rating.

A few of my loyal readers have pointed out that every once in a while my final Rating note does not seem to be totally in line with the written text. I recognize that. When I started this Whisky Blog back in 2011, I was not at all experienced in tasting and scoring Single Malts & Blends. Looking back I realize that during the early years I probably scored the good Whiskies too low and the not so good Whiskies too high. Ever since the beginning I try to remain consequent in my rating, always comparing the outcome to the rating of comparable whiskies in terms of quality and taste and adjusting the final rating if necessary. This might lead to the discrepancy I mentioned before. It would have been much easier if I would have chosen a simple 1-10 rating since the beginning but after having reviewed 950 whiskies it would not be wise to change the systen now. I will however from now on add stars on the 1-10 scale so you will have a better idea of what I thought of the whisky reviewed. Please feel free to comment!

Drinking Experience Neat:



This is not an easy one to judge. It's not a bad whisky at all but it could have done with more cask time as this was not an extremely active cask. The ABV is simply too high for this Spirit. It all noses and tastes a bit too Young in my opinion. As for the 1 Million $ question as to what distillery produced this malt I must admit that I'm not completely sure. The Pepper notes suggest Talisker but Talisker pepper is different in my mind although I never tasted Talisker that matured in an Ex-Oloroso cask. If I have to put money I would go for Arran but my guess is as good as yours. Please leave your comment if you have additional information on the subject. In any case I prefer the Arran 10, the Highland Park 12 and the Talisker 10 over this Breath!

Jan van den Ende                                                                           June 14, 2022

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