Google Little Ardbegs

Serge whiskyfun
Thousands of tastings,
all the music,
all the rambligs
and all the fun


Facebook Twitter Logo
Guaranteed ad-free
copyright 2002-2017


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

June 13, 2017


Little Ardbegs

We need to try one or three Ardbegs every once in a while, just to celebrate the name’s glorious past. And after all, this is Whiskyfun. I sincerely hope the distillery will soon make a much-celebrated and deservedly trumpeted comeback! We’re talking whisky, not marketing, of course… So, let’s see what we have in the queue…

Ar7 (56.3%, Specialty Drinks, Elements of Islay, bourbon, 2016)

Ar7 (56.3%, Specialty Drinks, Elements of Islay, bourbon, 2016) Three stars and a half Now that Master of Malts have added age statements to their Boutique-y whiskies, I’m wondering if TWE/Specialty Drinks will do the same with their Elements series. That wouldn’t be such a bad idea if you ask me… Even on PX finishes – since apparently, this ‘beg was finished in PX. Just a Friday afternoon idea or a brainwave? Let’s see… Colour: deep gold. Nose: it’s not rare that PX + peat create heavy notes of burnt tyres and burning fir wood. That’s exactly what’s happening here. And hot brake pads, engine oil, burning pinecones, pencil shavings… With water: some meat coming out. Steak, parsley, béarnaise, soy sauce, a pinhead of natto (nothing to do with Donald J.)… This is very heavy. Mouth (neat): creamy, rich, very salty, and totally mentholated. Thin mints, mint sauce (how very English), ginger, artichokes, oak extracts, pepper, more pepper, even more pepper… With water: still a bit pachydermic, oaky, extractive, but there are fresher notes of pomegranates appearing. But pomegranates in Ardbeg? Finish: long, oaky, heavy, spicy, and rather cigary. Comments: it’s an extreme Ardbeg and you sure won’t handle it with kid’s gloves. Very good, but not my favourite style. Perhaps keep a bottle in the cupboard for, say thirty years?… SGP:477 - 83 points.

Ardbeg 18 yo 1998/2016 (56.6%, Signatory Vintage, Straight From The Cask, bourbon barrel, cask #1776, 280 bottles)

Ardbeg 18 yo 1998/2016 (56.6%, Signatory Vintage, Straight From The Cask, bourbon barrel, cask #1776, 280 bottles) Three stars and a half Always loved this little series by SV. And with a bourbon barrel, we’re pretty much seeking redemption (after the, cough, PX). Colour: pale gold. Nose: well, it seems that we’ve bartered heavy PX for heavy vanilla and orange liqueur. The thing is that we like vanilla and orange liqueur much better than that stuffy thing called PX (sure there are some great old ones, but those aren’t the ones that are used to finish whisky, mind you). So, vanilla cake and oysters (I know) plus orange liqueur and smoked salmon. It’s not very complex, and the spirit’s even a little simplistic, but the combo works. With water: a little leather and a handful of dried kelp, that’s pretty all. Not the best swimmer on the island. Mouth (neat): we’re close to the recent OBs. Bubblegum, vanilla, and a slightly binary peat/pepper combo. No transmutations seem to have occurred in the cask yet, this is still totally secondary (as opposed to tertiary, see what I mean). Pepper. With water: fruits come out. Citrons, pears, tangerines. Still narrow. Finish: rather long, a little mojito-y. Lime in the aftertaste. Comments: very good and a little simple. Have I used the word binary? Oh and was the purifier on or off, on June 18, 1998? SGP:557 - 84 points.

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


Pete McPeat and Jack Washback






Whiskyfun's Home
Whiskyfun's Facebook page Whiskyfun's Twitter page Whiskyfun's RSS feed