Nose: A lot of citrus notes on the nose when opening the little bottle, especially blood oranges stick out. A whiff of smoke – but not overpowering as is expected from an older peated whisky – and a hint of fresh salmon too. Furthermore there are lots of different red berries to be found and some green herbs, where sage and basil are most recognisable.
Palate: A quite honey-sweet taste, lots of fruits with mangos and stewed pears and many red berries. Dark and bitter chocolate, more citrus and spicy hot white peppers layer the inside of the palate.
Finish: A long, smoky and ashy finish, some marmalade and grapefruit.
Conclusion: Oh. Now this is an Ardbeg I’ve never tasted before. Very gentle on all senses, and she keeps bringing nice surprises with every next sip you take. Just wonderful, and I am persuading myself into buying a bottle, since… well, I just want a bottle.
More info: Distilled in 1991, matured for 23 years and bottled into only 114 bottles in 2014. “A cracking single cask from Fred Laing’s personal collection”.
Sample provided by Douglas Laing as part of the #BigPeat twitter tasting.