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

November 14, 2017


Bruichladdich by three

One thing is sure, it’s that Bruichladdich, most certainly thanks to Mark Reynier, were the first to properly address the concept of terroir in modern Scotchland. Current owners Rémy seem to be going on, and to push the concept a few steps further according to their recent acquisitions (Westland, Hautes Glaces…) And I wouldn’t be surprised if Diageo would do something similar with their ‘new’ Brora and Port Ellen… All great news, in my opinion, as I’m rather sure terroir should exist in whisky, should you make sure it’s kept within your concept, and doesn’t if you source your ingredients and mature your spirits just anywhere - in other words, it may be a tad fallacious to dump anything terroiry and then claim that terroir doesn’t exist. Because indeed, ‘terroir’ comes at a cost. Anyway…

Bruichladdich 2010/2017 ‘Islay Barley’ (50%, OB)

Bruichladdich 2010/2017 ‘Islay Barley’ (50%, OB) Three stars and a half This baby from eight different farms. Sadly, they’ve been using some French wine casks too, but let’s see… Colour: straw. Nose: bready and spicy, feeling ‘new craft’, and in a way, rather un-Bruichladdich. Indeed it’s thicker, apparently, with some Stolle, anise cookies, gingerbread, and only in the background, a little melon. With water: spicy oak and spicy bread all forward. Bavarian muesli and pumpernickel. Mouth (neat): the spicy oak really feels, but there’s excellent citrus to counter-balance that. Lemon oil. Pineapples and mangos that kind of scream ‘white Rhône’, otherwise more gingerbread. With water: really good, feeling very ‘craft’. Now some young whisky that feels even younger, that’s a little bizarre… Finish: candied lemons, more spicy bread, more oak spices, caraway, cinnamon… Comments: the problem, should there be any, is that you just cannot tell if this very peculiar character comes from the barley’s origins (well, Islay) or from the casks. Or from both. Perhaps better science?... SGP:462 - 84 points.

Bruichladdich 12 yo 2005/2017 (48.4%, Douglas Laing, Old Particular, bourbon barrel, cask #11830, 276 bottles)

Bruichladdich 12 yo 2005/2017 (48.4%, Douglas Laing, Old Particular, bourbon barrel, cask #11830, 276 bottles) Four stars This should be clean as a whistle. Last year’s 2005 was ex-sherry (WF 81). Colour: straw. Nose: close to the official 10. Melon, vanilla, touch of ozone, custard, porridge, sponge cake. It is coastal. Mouth: very good, clean, vivid and fruity, firm, with more yellow melons, and more grapefruits. It’s a tad biting at times, but that’s for your good. Finish: long, natural, on some kind of custard tarte with bits of peaches inside. Comments: very good pretty naked Bruichladdich, with just a little a more fresh US oak than usual. Which works very well. The distillate’s pretty perfect. SGP:551 - 85 points.

Bruichladdich 2002/2013 (57%, Samaroli, Wild and Primitive, cask #561, 330 bottles)

Bruichladdich 2002/2013 (57%, Samaroli, Wild and Primitive, cask #561, 330 bottles) Four stars I don’t think this was Silvano’s work, but there. Colour: pale gold. Nose: a tad buttery and custardy at first, but gets then superbly mineral and sooty, and I wouldn’t have told you it was Bruichladdich. Unless we’d have remembered that the first batches after the reopening had been pretty peaty (8ppm if I remember well)… Notes of bandages, old hessian, iodine… With water: that walk in the rain and on some Islay beach. You know what I mean. Kelp, floated wood, gasoline… Mouth (neat): a tad easy at first, and then massive, punchy, citric and smoky. Not your average Bruichladdich for sure, we’d even call it PC-y. Oh well… The peppery side’s getting huge after just thirty seconds. With water: rounder and fruitier again. Smoked tangerines, chlorophyll gums, one bit of mango. Finish: long, more citrusy again. Lime juice and crushed chalk, plus some greener spices. Cardamom? Comments: Port Charlotte? Lochindaal? SGP:463 - 87 points.

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






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