Google A bag of crazy Bruichladdich at high strength

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Hi, this is one of our (almost) daily tastings. Santé!

January 17, 2017


A bag of crazy Bruichladdich
at high strength

Really many Bruichladdichs. Let’s see how far we’ll manage to go while trying to preserve what's left of our sanity… As usual we’ll start with a lower-strength apéritif, and then go wild. Hopefully…

Bruichladdich 11 yo 2005/2011 (48.4%, Douglas Laing, Old Particular, sherry hogshead, cask #DL11509, 185 bottles)

Bruichladdich 11 yo 2005/2016 (48.4%, Douglas Laing, Old Particular, sherry hogshead, cask #DL11509, 185 bottles) Three stars Particular, perhaps, old, certainly not ;-). Colour: golden amber. Nose: a clean, raisiny and fudge-y sherriness at first nosing, then more milk chocolate and Golden Grahams. Mars bar, molasses, corn syrup, warm brioche… You see… Mouth: super-good, rather simple, starting with the same malty/chocolaty notes, but getting then more soupy, bouillony, marrowy (!)… Very obvious notes of parsley and even tarragon. As for Bruichladdich’s rather delicate spirit, it got, well, rather buried. Finish: long, cake-y. Pipe tobacco, cinnamon mints, caraway. Comments: a very demonstrative and spectacular young sherry monster, with a Japanese side. Forgot to mention Ovaltine. So much for an apéritif. SGP:571 - 81 points.

Bruichladdich 11 yo 2003/2015 (61.1%, OB, Crofter’s Cask, cask #1161, fresh bourbon)

Bruichladdich 11 yo 2003/2015 (61.1%, OB, Crofter’s Cask, cask #1161, fresh bourbon) Five stars A private bottling done at the distillery. Does the photograph suggest that it’s the dog’s bol… well, you see… You knew the old distillery motto, didn’t you! Colour: pale gold. Nose: sublime ‘elementary’ melony spirit, with whiffs of sea air. This is more Bruichladdich than any Bruichladdich. Adore this. Let’s move on… With water: meadows, melons, sea breeze, hay, mud. Elementarily brilliant. Mouth (neat): what a syrup! Tangerines, melons, a touch of salt. And boy it burns. Great whiskies at very high strengths are disasters, because you cannot help sipping them, and they’ll kill you. A scandal. With water: magical. Fresh, full, fruity, herbal… Plainly and totally properly aged barley eau-de-vie. Finish: very long, zesty, millimetric, and totally well-carved. Comments: this one comes with echoes of the famous official 1970, and of course an obvious parentage with the first new 10. Stunning distillate. SGP:651 - 90 points.

Bruichladdich 10 yo 2001/2011 (58.7%, OB, private cask, sherry bloodtub, cask #777, 29 bottles) Four stars and a half A tiny bottling from our friend Tom in Croatia. Ah those leaking bloodtubs… Colour: deep amber. Nose: these bloodtubs, whether sherried or not, did build a bridge between high-end Scotch and high-end Bourbon. This is magnificent, rich, spicy, meaty, raisiny, prune-y, earthy, full of the richest pipe tobaccos, of the oldest menthe cordials, and of the most obscure Middle-European herbal liqueurs. There. With water: stunning spicy/earthy profile, extremely thick, rich, and yeah, spicy. You could bring it down to 20% vol., it would still roar and almost bite your precious nose. Mouth (neat): ouch. Clove liqueur or something? Concentrated caraway juice? Walnut oil? The heaviest and the thickest whisky I’ve tried this year. But yeah, this is January 8 (at time of writing). With water: we almost managed to tame this very heavy concoction. Speculoos galore! And pumpernickel dipped into soy sauce. Or something like that. Finish: eternal. Comments: is this legal? A highly demonstrative young Bruichladdich, totally lovable… But I wouldn’t call it ‘the best balanced whisky ever’. SGP:572 - 88 points.

My, we’ll never make it to five Bruichladdichs!

Bruichladdich 5 yo 2010/2016 (55.3%, OB, private cask, Artisan Restaurant, bloodtub, cask #4092, 40 bottles)

Bruichladdich 5 yo 2010/2016 (55.3%, OB, private cask, Artisan Restaurant, bloodtub, cask #4092, 40 bottles) Four stars and a half And he insists… Colour: gold. Nose: ah, better civilised territories… Barley, melon, touches of mint, pomegranates, peaches, butterscotch, warm croissants, earth, cigar tobacco… Lovely lovely lovely. And easier. With water: apricots, melons, peaches… This is so totally Laddie. Mouth (neat): supreme candied fruits, first pears (and I mean, all pears of the creation), then melons and quinces. Behind that, tobacco and autumn leaves, plus a few greenish spices. Green pepper. With water: some golden fruity syrup that you could pour over any crèpe or pancake. Finish: long, rather fresh, adorably fruity and pastry-y (not too sure about that one, S.). Comments: a rounder Crofter’s Cask. Same extremely high quality, just a tad simpler, perhaps. SGP:651 - 89 points.

Bruichladdich 9 yo 2006/2016 (59.5%, Svenska Eldvatten, sherry, cask #1339, 282 bottles)

Bruichladdich 9 yo 2006/2016 (59.5%, Svenska Eldvatten, sherry, cask #1339, 282 bottles) Four stars A return to sanity? Perhaps not… Colour: amber. Nose: more oils but also more pencil shavings. Chocolate, dark pipe tobacco, burnt wood, mentholated liquorice… Well, the jury’s still out. With water: overripe pears and dried ones do come out. Figs. Mouth (neat): thick, heavy, invading, and pretty oaky. This is something I had expected from the bloodtubs, but actually, this hogshead (?) has more oak. Cloves everywhere. With water: spicy raisins, cloves, cinnamon, caraway… This is heavy. Also obvious notes of Campari, unless that’s Aperol. Finish: long and really very Aperoly. Comments: some oak involved, it appears. Indeed, some understatement. A little too much for me, but remember I’m a man of delicate sensibility. Yeah yeah. SGP:561 - 85 points.

Friends, I have to stop now, my throat got totally sore. We might try to have more extreme Bruichladdichs tomorrow if Fookenayhess, god of whisky, lets me live.

(thank you John and Tom!)

More tasting notes Check the index of all Bruichladdich I've tasted so far







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