Style: Vanilla fruits and Spicy
A raw, higher power of spirit spice striking earthy, green medicinal top notes. Thin threads of kelp peat and smoked ham wrapping around a lesser fruity core – white peaches and dried apricots with a gentle lime zest around the edges. Vanilla orange notes slowly emerge while limestone dripping over it towards the end.
More vanilla orange combines with medicinal herbs and peat smoke touching down on the palate. White pepper, generous drops of creamy coffee assembling around the lemon aloe vera core. Playful spice teasing a little bit, chocolate coats around smoked apricot. Delicate dash of perfumed white flower notes (not the soapy kind). Milky mocha and oak gives a round and heavier undertone. Finishes off with another dose of hickory smoke.
Bonfire peat and yellow fruits converge at the very end. Hazelnut chocolate, a touch of brine and lemon aloe vera to finish.
Probably not the crowd favourite Ardbeg in recent times, maybe it is relatively drier on the nose, and slightly constrained compared to its siblings. But to be very honest, I think the overall expression is still rather well-polished, integrated and complete. I am getting the vibe that things can hardly go wrong with the spirit blueprint of Ardbeg. Probably this highlights the importance of having an exceptional distillate. Not a “strong” one star perhaps, but the quality is there if you ask me.
[49.9% • Original Bottling • Non Chill Filtered • Limited Edition • 2014 Bottled • No Age Statement]