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90 95Direct Import ReducedSpeyside, Highlands, SCOTLAND
Reduced from $145.00
- ABV 40%
For many, the Ace in the Glenfiddich pack and simply amazing value at this direct import price. Elsewhere pay $145+
While the twelve year old is a relatively non-descript malt, older Glenfiddich bottlings are now gaining high praise including one award as the world's best single malt Scotch whisky. However, as a representation of the house style, the 18 year old pretty much nails it. Always a centre-piece of the portfolio, the company has further emphasised its place by redesigning the packaging to give it a more superior look than its 12- and 15-year-old stablemates.
The Glenfiddich distillery lies on the river whose name it bears. 'Fiddich' refers to the fact that the river runs through a valley inhabited by deers – hence the company's logo which features a stag. A proportion of the whisky in this version of Glenfiddich is supposedly even older than the label suggests.
Tasting note: Deep gold colour. Moderate aromas include honey, clove and vanilla laced malt. On the palate, dried apricots and spice are augmented by soft peat, adding depth to the toasty malt. Plush mouth feel. Clean, dried fruit and spice finish. Rich and round, in the mainstream of Sherry influenced malts. 40% Alc./Vol.
Other reviews... the smoke which for long marked this aroma, appears to have vanished...one of the most complex deliveries Speyside can conjure....long, despite the miserly 40% offered, with plenty of banana custard and a touch of pear; at the moment, the ace in the Glenfiddich pack. If this was bottled at 46%, unchillfiltered etc, I dread to think what the score might be. 95 points- Jim Murrays Whisky Bible 2016
Luxe and easy-sipping. Look for enticing notes of butterscotch, baked pear, cinnamon and clove on the nose and palate, swathed in just the right amount of smokiness.
96 points - www.wineenthusiast.com
Islay, SCOTLAND$84.99 Bottle
- ABV 46%
Perched on a wave washed, rocky headland, the Ardbeg distillery was founded in 1815 by the MacDougalls of Ardbeg. The distilleries scattered white washed buildings are reminiscent of a Dutch settlement and add to the dramatic coastal landscape. Ardbeg has had a chequered history and in recent times had been closed down for many years. Glenmorangie acquired Ardbeg in 1997 and has set about restoring the distillery to its former glory. Despite the turbulence of its past, none of Ardbeg’s qualities have been diminished. All of the time worn traditions have been carefully preserved and passed on to today’s craftsmen. The Ardbeg 10 Year Old is clear testimony to this. In his 'Complete Book of Whisky' Jim Murray said of it: 'If perfection on the palate exists, this is it.'
Other reviews… Ardbeg 10 - (97)
n24 more complex, citrus-led and sophisticated than recent bottlings, though the peat is no less but now simply displayed in an even greater elegance; a beautiful sea salt strain to this;
t24 gentle oils carry on them a lemon-lime edge, sweetened by barley and a weak solution of golden syrup; the peat is omnipotent, turning up in every crevice and wave, yet never once over-stepping its boundary;
f24 stuuningly clean, the oak offers not a bitter trace but rather a vanilla and butterscotch edge to the barley. Again the smoke wafts around in a manner unique in the world of whisky when it comes to sheer elan and adroitness;
b25 like when you usually come accross something that goes down so beautifully and with such a nimble touch and disallarming allure, just close your eyes and enjoy... 46% -Jim Murray's Whisky Bible 2013
...Nose: Astoundingly smoky, yet delicate with subtle tarry notes behind. With water the smoke dies a little and raisin and caramelised apple notes emerge. Palate: An immediate waft of peat smoke. Full, robustly flavoured with turf and lapsang souchong tea. Finish: Salty, long and filled with fragrant peat reek. Comment: A punch in the chops from a stroppy Islay middleweight. Flavour-packed yet delicate.
Rated: 9/10 - www.whiskymag.com
Cocktail: The Smoky MartiniMethod: Rinse a chilled martini glass with Ardbeg Malt Whisky and pour out any extra. Shake 60ml of Premium Vodka in a shaker filled with large ice cubes and strain into a Martini glass. Garnish with a lemon and orange twist.
This is an unusual combination that works surprisingly well. Some people use less peaty whiskies, however the true Smoky Martini requires the likes of Ardbeg or Laphroaig – Single Malts which lend their peaty, textured flavour to the creamy character of a good vodka.
- ABV 57.1%
Ardbeg's Corryvreckan replaces the now discontinued Airigh Nam Beist.
Unusually dry for Ardbeg, otherwise an utterly brilliant, unique expression of Islay.
Tasting note: Dull gold colour with pale straw hue. quite an unusual nose for an Ardbeg. Rich chocolate, vanilla, lemon butter and spice above a smoky salty layer, the only evidence that it's Ardbeg is the end note of terracotta/clay/wet charcoal. With time in the glass, fresh smoky characteristics emerge, but do not dominate. The intense palate is initially rich and creamy, quite heavily peated, rich chocolatey flavours mingle harmoniously with the lemon butter before the unusually overt oak grips dry and the peat explodes - softly! The back palate is dry, firm, overtly oaky, and extremely spicy. Excellent balance at cask strength. Warm, tingly, spicy finish. Lemon, dry cocoa, strong spice and gentle smoke dominate the lengthy aftertaste. Austerely dry by Ardbeg standards but one of their best on record.57.1% Alc./Vol.
n23.5 excellent, thick, not entirely un-penetrable - but close - nascent smoke and a vignette of salty, coastal references save the day; t24.5 amazing; here we have Ardbeg nutshelled. Just so many layers of almost unaccountable personalities with perhaps the citrus leading the way in both tart and sweet form and then the oak, in vanilla form, in close proximity. The peat, almost too dense to be seen on the nose, opens out with a fanfare of phenols. it is slumping-in-the-chair stuff, the enormity of the peat taking on the majesty of Cathedral-esque proportions, the notes reverberating around the hollows and recesses and reaching dizzying heights; such is its confidence, this is a malt which says: 'I know where I'm going...!'; f24 long, outwardly laconic but on further investigation just brimming with complexity. Some brown sugary notes help the barley come up trumps late on but it's the uniquely salty shield to the mocha which sets this apart. Simply brilliant and unique in its effortless enormity...even by Ardbeg standards; b25 as famous writers - including the occasional genius film director (stand up wherever you are my heroes Powell and Pressburger) - appear to be attracted to Corryvreckan, the third most violent whirlpool found in the world and just off Islay, to boot, I selected this as my 1,500th whisky tasted for the historic Jim Murray Whisky Bible 2009. I'm so glad I did because many have told me they thought Blasda ahead of this. To me, it's not even a contest. Currently I have only a sample. Soon I shall have a bottle. I doubt if even the feared whirlpool is this deep and perplexing. 57.1% 5000 bottles
Jim Murray's Whisky Bible 2009
Powerful, muscular, well-textured, and invigorating. Even within the realm of Ardbeg, this one stands out. The more aggressive notes of coal tar, damp kiln, anise and smoked seaweed are supported by an array of fruit (black raspberry, black cherry, plum), dark chocolate, espresso, molasses, bacon fat, kalamata olive, and warming cinnamon on the finish. Quite stunning!
John Hansell - The Malt Advocate
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