I love a peated Islay whisky, they are the drams that drew me into this obsession in the first place and they are the ones that continue to fuel the fire of it too. If you like a peaty whisky, then read on, if not then maybe click away, try the Classic Laddie instead.
The Bruichladdich distillery was built in 1881 by three brothers on the shore of Loch Indall on the Western side of Islay. At the time it was a state of the art distillery, when many were more like farm buildings. The stills created were tall and thin, with the aim of creating a pure and original spirit. After many changes of ownership over the years since, little has changed and most of the original machinery remains in use today. This process creates an artisan spirit.
Today’s dram for review is the Bruichladdich, Port Charlotte, which I picked up in 20cl format.
Appearance: Golden yellow, like the sun glinting in the back of a bumble bee as it searches for pollen.
Aroma: Warm sweet smoke, which is rich, charcoal filled and filled with the flavours of smoking fish.
Taste: These first flavours are all about the anticipation of smoke and flavour. They are thick, smoggy and sweet. There is a round, fruitful flavour, which reminds me of the pure joy of eating peanut butter and jam sandwiches.
Then a heat and spice builds on the middle of the tongue. This flavour is carried forwards, by thick black pungent smoke.
Finally, the smoke breaks out from the confines of the spice and spreads around the mouth. It numbs the tongue, with charcoal smoke and rich, robust sea salt. This marriage of smoke with salt, floats my mind away to a Northern English Coastal town and the warmth of a charcoal fire, after long, wet walks in whipping cold wind.
Mouthfeel: Sweet, smoked and lightly spiced.
Overall: I am yet to experience the joys of Islay, but this whisky feels emblematic of the spirit of a special island. It excites me that I might get to partake of this soon, but I encourage anyone who might not get chance, to snap up this whisky, drink it down and enjoy it.
Real Dram Factor: 8.1
More Information: Bruichladdich