Whisky Connosr
Buy Whisky Online

Ardbeg 1977

Average score from 4 reviews and 4 ratings 92

Ardbeg 1977

Product details

  • Brand: Ardbeg
  • Bottler: Distillery Bottling
  • ABV: 46.0%
  • Vintage: 1977

Shop for this

What next?

  • Add to cabinet
  • Add to wish list
Ardbeg 1977

This is a great old bottle of Ardbeg that my wife bought online for me. From the bottle code it dates from September 18th of 2002. Sadly . . . this is the end of the bottle. To celebrate I put it up against the Ardbeg 17 year old and the Beist.

Nose: Wow. Much more smoky then the 17. WAY more peat also. Engine oil, gasoline, engine degreaser, engine coolant, turpentine, auto-mechanic garage . . . now it changes . . . charcoal, hickory wood chips, chunks of charred oak. The 46% is doing this whisky right. It is extremely complex and evocative. Now, lemon bread, citrus, hay, porridge, malted barley . . . and cakes of soap. All of this complexity lives under the blanket of a big robust peaty umbrella. Where the Beist is all about sexy smoke this has a much bigger peat muscle. This is a trip back in time to an old mechanic’s garage . . . that is surprisingly clean . . . with an unexplained peat fire in the corner (?) I love the intense iodine, pine, strong peat, but most of all the old auto-mechanic garage of this old guy. Water is fantastic on the nose and really releases some sweet peat and engine notes. It becomes more austere and philosophical.

Taste: Super sweet arrival of malt and peat. Some of that mechanic engine degreaser, and other cleaning products. Certainly there is an impression of metal, diesel oil, and pine. (Pine fresh diesel oil with soprano peat). With water more balanced and smoky.

Finish: Very interesting . . . starts off strong, then takes a breath like you are waiting for the huge Ardbeg tsunami we have come to expect. There are a few waves of peat but nothing like the cascading attack of the Corry, or Supernova . . . or even the 10yo. However, as you are looking for the wave in one direction the real peat attack creeps up on you and consumes your mouth while you are distracted. It is a fairly long finish, but nothing really stands out. Mostly you are left with tons of impressions: herbs, pine trees, green things, diesel oil, mechanic equipment, peat, ocean brine, sea salt, drift wood . . . With water it becomes more smoky and subdued. But still lovely.

Complexity, Balance: Very complex and well balanced. The Beist might be slightly more balanced between peat, smoke, etc. Here the ‘77 really has about 4 or 5 gears: peat, auto-mechanic garage, pine tree forest, iodine ocean, and finally fruit.

Aesthetic experience: The bottle with the vintage age looks amazing on the shelf. (and I am sad to see it go). Somehow a 72, 75, or 76 seem more mystic and old. The 77 feels strangely new and modern in its ancientness . . . I LOVE that they gave it 46% ABV in 2002 and ncf.

Conclusion: This was a wonderful gift from my wife. I am so glad to have had it . . . but I doubt I would pay the money required to obtain another bottle (currently going for well over $600 a bottle). While it is extremely complex (with old school Ardbeg notes) it is also very subtle next to the Corry or the Supernova . . . too much so on the finish for me. The finish is really where it lost points for me. Maybe I would have loved this at Cask Strength . . . it might have been pushed up to 96 or 97. However, it is still a wonderful old Ardbeg that I recommend.

You've outdone yourself again,Nock. Bravo!!!

Only Islays can make us salivate even when the tasting notes refer to motor oil, gasoline, and the like. Wish I had a bottle of it myself.


from a purchased sample

Nose: Peat, brine, and kosher salt (obviously). There's a good layer of fruit behind it -- mainly lemon. Damp clamshells and oysters. A little pepper. Vanilla. Dried flower petals. Pineapple and apple juice. Fennel and caraway seeds for good measure.

Palate: The peat is richly ashy and sooty. I like this kind of thing. Honey, vanilla, and pepper come out first, but quietly give way to the peat. Very slight salt, lemony and coastal rocks. It's nice, but a bit flat.

Finish: Refined and elegant, but frustratingly light and brief. It's interesting to go back to these older Ardbegs to compare them to their massive younger siblings in the recent releases. In this one, the peat marries nicely with the fruit, it just needs a bit more heft and body.


In June 2001 this Ardbeg 1977, their third Vintage, was released. Initially for around 90 EUR, but today one may count his blessings when he can find a bottle for three or four times that amount. It has become something of a cult whisky, you could say. Hard to find through regular channels, you will probably need to point your browser to auction sites to get hold of this bottle. Or get a sample from a friend, like I did (thanks, Foamy!).

The nose is surprisingly soft on a truckload of citrus (mandora and lime), seaweeds, iodine and a smoldering bonfire. Just a tiny bit of salt. The peat is very discreet and is nicely shrouded in fresh cream.

It is light on the palate, yet mouth coating. Slightly oily. Very sweet attack on vanilla and a basket full of citrus fruits. Midpalate I get some sea salt, the peat rears its head in full force and spices are revealed. The oak now speaks and makes your mouth somewhat dry. Again, very soft. Nice development!

The finish is a neverending story and wonderfully long. It has no use trying to taste anything else after this one, I think.

Okay, this is indeed a cult whisky (and not just because it was distilled in the year George Lucas released Star Wars). One of the best Ardbeg I have tasted so far. Pity it has become so expensive.


Popular Ardbeg whiskies