Stand up and applaud. For Ardbeg. For bringing in a 5yo to the market that’s very good. On the bottle it says ‘A monster of a dram’ attributing to its young age & peat.
Colour: Right. The wife won’t interpret it any more than water. In worst case, may be detox water. Never an Ardbeg. Pale lemon.
Nose: Wow. Citrus notes, peat but more like Uigeadail on the nose not an Octomore peat, very Arbeg tar, saline, iodine, sea sand, fenugreek leaves (Vendhayam) .... For a 5yo, no idea how could it be so good.
Palate: Wonderful. I had this feeling it will dry up my nostrils and crack my cranium with peat & youth. Alas, I was completely wrong. This one’s so lovely, easy to sip except for some pepper pods bringing in a dry heat and intense flavour. (நம்ம மிளகு ரசம் குருமிளகு) Oily and viscous. Some horsegram chutney with smoke all around but more gentle. Beast? May be an amazing elephant from Rama Narayanan movie thats so docile & cute. Brilliant. Superb. Saliness. Loads of wet sand. Some fruitiness more of citrus ones, some vanilla, and a strong eucalyptus note that I almost confused with dark cardamom.
Finish: Medium and a bit of oiliness. Dark chocolate, tar, sweetness and some saline. Recently I had salted caramel icecream from Movenpick just to understand what salted caramel would look like. This Ardbeg will beat Movenpick to death on salted caramel.
Sherry casks and ex-bourbon barrels put together.
A very rounded, lovely, oily, flavourful Ardbeg thats luscious, smoky and easy to drink.
A MONK OF A DRAM.
I always consider Ardbeg, Benromach as the top distilleries with excellent core range whiskies. Ardbeg 10, Corry & Oogie is the greatest trio of core range whiskies. An oa is there but not there. With this 5yo WEE BEASTIE in the core range, Ardbeg looks formidable. I can stick out my neck and say, for the price point it ‘smokes’ the rest.