Ardbeg. One of those distilleries I have a love/hate relationship with. I’m rather fond of the distillery itself and the base distillate they produce but I’m less than enthusiastic about the over-the-top branding with all the flannel and the special releases, it just doesn’t appeal to me. These days I might get a bottle of the still very good TEN every once in a blue moon when it’s on sale but I ignore the rest. That also includes independently bottled Ardbegs. At one point Ardbeg was a distillery you HAD to buy casks of if you wanted casks from one of the higher-valued distilleries in their owner’s portfolio. These days independently owned casks are rare, sought after and priced accordingly. In my opinion and experience, the only somewhat sanely priced bottler of Ardbeg remains Cadenhead’s – and even their current prices are above what I’m personally willing to pay. So I guess this is already sold out in most markets but thanks to the shop in Vienna (who miraculously still seem to have stock, according to their website, at the time of writing) I was sent a wee sample to have a wee nose and taste…
Dram data: Distillery: Ardbeg Bottler: Cadenhead’s Distilled: 1993 Bottled: 2019 Age: 25 years Limitation: 216 bottles Cask: Hogshead Alcohol: 51,6% uncoloured / not chill filtered Whiskybase link
Bottler: Original Bottling
Limitation: 6600 (inofficial sources)
Price at the time of purchasing: 89€
Casks: ex-bourbon with freshly toasted lids
Uncoloured & Unchillfiltered Whiskybase link
Tasting notes: Colour: Red gold. The nose is typically Ardbeg. Salty, briny, iodine, burnt newspaper, ground coffee, vanilla sweetness. A bit more burnt vanilla than the standard Ardbeg Ten, but that’s the only cask influence I can detect. Liquorice, honey and caramel in the background. Continue reading “Tasting: Ardbeg Auriverdes”
I was selected as one of the lucky tweet tasters for the Douglas Laing @DLaingWhisky#BigPeat tweet tasting hosted by @TheWhiskyWire on the eve of the 21st of May 2014. Big thanks to DouglasLaing, Steve Rush and all the fellow tweet tasters for the great evening! Worthy of a repetition in my book!
In preparation for the tasting we all received a lovely little package from Scotland (see picture on the right). It contained five mystery samples (which were tasted blind) and a few assorted goodies like a bottle of rainwater, peat cones (to fill the air with lovely peat flavour), an Islay pebble to chill our dram on hot summer days and a mystery key to Big Peat’s house (still waiting on this mystery to be solved…) – all in all a very lovely package – very well thought out!
Bottler: Official bottling
Bottled: 2009 (lot: L9 231)
Price at the time of purchasing: 57€
Casks: french oak + ex-bourbon
Unchillfiltered & natural color Whiskybase link
The dram has a very nice amber/red-gold colour. On the nose I get an immediate hit of alcohol paired with the very typical, phenolic, punchy Ardbeg peat which people tend to either love or hate – I happen to like it very, very much. Continue reading “Tasting: Ardbeg Corryvreckan”