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Ardbeg Alligator

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@PierreReview by @Pierre

18th Jun 2011


Ardbeg Alligator
  • Nose
  • Taste
  • Finish
  • Balance
  • Overall

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Nose: on first approach I’m greeted by distinct notes of ripe cherries buoyed by a wisp of milkiness (akin to the breath of a baby after feeding). The nose develops with background hints of resin and menthol. After a while some mango joins in.

With the addition of water the milky notes subside and the ripe cherries are coated in caramelised sugar which soon morphs to sweet cured bacon on a barbecue. Finally some menthol and hint of peat smoke.

Palate: Rich and fruity with some powerful, and dry, woody flavours. Developing to a very enjoyable spicy bitterness in the mid palate. Finally some dry charcoal smoke. The maritime influence is restrained throughout with just a hint of saltiness and the peat taking a backseat to the fruit and spice.

Following the addition of water, the fruit becomes more pronounced producing some delightfully fizzy sensations on the tongue - like cherry candy. Drying out to that pleasing bitterness accompanied by some liquorice.

Finish: long and satisfying. Dry smoke, tar and spice.

Comments: a very satisfying Ardbeg, not my absolute favourite but certainly worth investigating.

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dbk commented

Lovely review, @Piero! I'd love to track a bottle down.

12 years ago 0

markjedi1 commented

'akin to the breath of a baby after feeding' - now there's a comparison! Lovely. I got to taste this one last Saturday at The Whisky Exchange in London (they offer a dram from a 4,5L bottle to every committee member that shows up) and enjoyed it quite a bit, although I felt it was quite young-ish.

12 years ago 0

Dellnola commented

I also had a sample from that giant bottle in The Whisky Exchange (the first actually. I watched the employees open it!). I agree markjedi1, I found it to be young but definitely of high quality. I need to get a hold of a bottle when it is released so I can really dig into it.

The Uigeadail is still the reigning king for me though.

12 years ago 0

Ardbeggar commented

I had a sample too and managed to buy 2 bottles. I guess these will later on be known as the special committee reserves... In the Netherlands the Alligator will available (not the committee reserves!) from september at the Ardbeg embassies and in octobre at other retailers. To my taste the Alligator is very sweet and has not the breathtaking Ardbeg power. It is not a Rollercoaster or Supernova. But defenitely Ardbeg (though it reminds me a bit of certain Caol Ila) and in summer this is fine with me. And as it's raining all day here now, I don't mind. I'll do the old sing along thing.."Let it rain, let it rain, let it rain..." I agree with 88/100

12 years ago 0

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