That Boutiquey Whisky Company just seems to have a sadistic side to it, expression after expression is being released from top distilleries who insist on withholding the name and us poor customers have to try and work out just which distillery it might be from..
Dave who is one of the Ambassadors ( I say one, he is only officially the “ best Ambassador” in the world !! ) Just loves his blind tastings, so I’m sure he just sits at home too laughing to himself at the thought of us all trying to come up with the right answer..
So to this Islay #2, all we know is it is one of the Islay distilleries and from the cryptic label ( designed by the very talented Emily Chappell ) it’s a mystery .. Smoke, tropical fruits, and a doge are shown so not a lot of help there then..
Bottled at 48.7%, this 25yo is batch no1 and bottle 398 from 3124 which makes this the largest batch released from the company.. Distilled somewhere around 1992 – 1993 this whisky is of course all natural with no colour added and NCF..
Nose.. An instant onslaught of smouldering cinders dampened down by the sea spray.. ( Reminds me of a dying fire after a bbq on the beach ) burnt apple pie, smoked kippers, a touch of apple peel, citrus rind, dark chocolate ( but more like baking chocolate ) and some tobacco leaf..
Palate.. This is just crazy, the smokey, ashy note is just so dominant.. You also get those salty notes coming through with citrus, fresh fruits and plenty of sweetness in the form of vanilla, salted caramel and toffee notes.
Finish.. It won’t bloody go away ! So I guess that makes it incredibly long !!
Thoughts.. So that’s what it’s like to lick an ashtray…..
This certainly needs to be tamed, it’s like a wild beast on steroids with an attitude the size of Alaska… I thought the smoke was supposed to be a little tamer with age but I guess someone forgot to tell the whisky within this bottle that little fact !
If you want a real Islay dram then this has to be at the top of your list, forget the pretenders, this is the daddy of smoke !
I was thinking this is an Ardbeg and if it is then it’s incredibly good value for money, retailing at £155 from Master of Malt.. It is certainly more intense than most Islay expressions I have tasted and looking back at the Islay distilleries in the early 90’s, Ardbeg which is my guess for this bottling is just coming back into production from a period of closure in the 80’s and was still on a limited production, saying that though it’s probably something totally different..