As I’ve said before, I haven’t been drinking much heavily peated whisky for a while now. I loved the Port Charlotte from last week and some other samples, but my own bottles have been untouched for a year or more (except Lagavulin, that always goes down well).
So yesterday, continuing my renewed affection for this kind of whisky I decided to pour myself a wee glass of Ardbeg Corryvreckan. I bought the committee release in 2008 and popped the cork right away. I really liked this dram so I started ‘saving’ it and now, six years later, I still have a significant part of it left.
Of course, whether or not this is good for a bottle of whisky is to be debated, but I don’t think it has changed all that much. I did a short review of it a long time ago, but I thought I’d give it another spin and a more in depth review.
If I remember correctly there are French oak casks used for this bottling, but not much information is given on the Ardbeg website, apart from the bottle having no size (see the bottom of the page).
It’s quite crisp for such a heady dram, and more gentle than I’d expect from Ardbeg at this strength. Slightly sweet with sharp smoke, grass and heather. The sweetness is very oaky with some vanilla. Slightly different smelling than American oak, which is interesting. A bit ashy too.
The palate is sharper with ash and smoke, sweet oak with a gentle bitter note. It’s dry with white grapes and lychee (peel included). Quite rich, but still rather light.
The finish is very long and shows a crisp fruitiness. With typical Ardbeg-ness of heather, grass and salt smoke.
According to other sites and the official tasting notes I should also be getting hints of coffee, but I’m not so sure about those. Even though, without the coffee, it’s a very tasty Ardbeg. I’m glad I kept it around for so long!
The flavors are all rather predictable and appear in regular Ardbeg too, but there is another layer added with crisp fruits and that slightly different oaky flavor that makes it very interesting. To me this is the most interesting Committee release they have done in a while. At least since I’m a member!
Ardbeg Corryvreckan, 57.1%, Committee Release 2008. Back then it was some £ 80 I think, but now it’s going for € 240 / £ 180. So, surprisingly affordable for such an old Committee release!