CAOL ILA 17 ans 2002 French Connections G&M 54,6%

Single Malt Whisky, Scotland / Islay, 70cl, Ref: 57970

Quantity limited to 2 bottle(s) by client.

An LMDW exclusive 

After the impressive and very exclusive Caol Ila 2004 from our 2020 Creation Catalogue, we now invite you to discover this 2002 vintage also selected by La Maison du Whisky from the famous independent bottler Gordon & MacPhail. Naturally and precisely restoring the smoky, maritime, medicinal and fruity style of this iconic Islay, it has extracted from its sherry cask ageing the sweetness required to stay strong over time. This means that much later, candied lemon, a salty and liquorice peat, and noble flavours of tobacco (Havana cigar) and nutmeg make it feel like the tasting will never end.

Profile: the rich first nose reveals intense smoke, marine peat and candied lemon. Allowed to breathe, malted barley makes its entrance. It gradually becomes ashy, fruity (pear) and herbaceous (cut hay). The firm yet creamy attack is medicinal (camphor) and malty. On the mid-palate, it becomes even more medicinal and hot. The distinguished start of the finish reveals very noble notes of tobacco. Increasingly salty, it wonderfully embodies the Caol Ila style. Aromatic plants (lemongrass, tarragon) bring lots of freshness to the retro-nasal olfaction.

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Sourcing actor, importer and exclusive distributor of a portfolio of international brands, La Maison du Whisky is, since 60 years a reference for whisky and spirit lovers. Thanks to our close relationships with producers and independent bottlers, we have access to limited editions and unique products we bring to market exclusively. Curious and creative, we are driven by our passion for products and our desire to constantly bring our clients the latest expressions through our own shops, our website and selected wine retail shops in France.


Product details

Tasting note

  • Appearance : deep golden yellow.
  • Nose : rich, concentrated. On the first nose, intense smoke, marine peat and candied lemon play the main roles. Allowed to breathe, malted barley makes its entrance and changes everything around. Notes of ash, fresh fruit (pear, apple) and cut hay appear alongside a now oxidative peat (lichen, moss, crushed fruit). Notably, the aromatic palette has a very delicate texture (rice, grated ginger).
  • Palate : firm yet creamy. The medicinal attack (camphor, tiger balm, mustard poultice) is also deliciously malty. On the mid-palate, its medicinal character is accentuated, whilst strong spices (clove, nutmeg) and chilli bring lots of energy. The warm end of the palate is herbaceous (absinthe, aniseed sweets) and ashy (smoking Havana cigar). Gradually, yellow grapefruit and green liquorice reinforce the invigorating character of the flavour palette.
  • Overall : long, distinguished. At the start of the finish, very nobly expressed tobacco notes appear alongside the tangy flavours of Calisson d’Aix. Very Caol Ila, it develops an increasingly hot (Espelette pepper, paprika) and salty (samphire) register. In the aftertaste, iodine tincture is placed on the taste buds. Aromatic plants (lemongrass, tarragon, bay leaf) then bring lots of freshness to the retro-nasal olfaction. The oily and rooty empty glass is primarily focused on peat.
The brand

The brand

As well as reflecting its smoky, malted barley, Caol Ila is also oily and peaty, with marine and vegetable notes. Its recent official bottlings, which are particularly expressive, have an intense smoky and peaty character with a good balance of saltiness and sweetness. Superb versions of this single malt have also been released by independent bottlers Gordon MacPhail & Signatory Vintage. Caol Ila’s stills, which are large and onion-shaped, have a strong influence on this single malt and give it a fairly light and delicate character. Find out more



This independent bottler is without a doubt one of the most highly acclaimed in Scotland. It stands out, not for its age (though it is the oldest independent bottler in Scotland), but for its complete mastery of cask ageing. Gordon & MacPhail is the only bottler to have its own casks - carefully chosen for the purpose - filled by the distilleries themselves, instead of simply buying the ones suggested to them by the latter. This allows it to determine, in advance and with great precision, exactly how many years a whisky will need to reach ideal maturation.


The line

Of all the existing specialist bottling ranges, Connoisseurs Choice is without doubt the oldest. The label underwent a few changes in the 1980s. Plainer and more restrained, it became two-toned with creams and browns. When segmentation by region of production region was adopted by the whisky industry in the early 1990s, the range changed its identity again. The label now shows a map of the region of Scotland where the malt comes from. To the delight of whisky enthusiasts, the range, which is always evolving, is now bottled at 43% and 46%.

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