Show rating data charts
Distribution of ratings for this:
Ardbeg Day, launched in 2012 for the first time, is a new holiday for peatfreaks. Or is it? Because while Ardbeg Day is a great whisky, the Galileo (a mix of bourbon and marsala casks) was received with mixed emotions by the die-hard Arbeggians. The first reactions to this new Ardbog (a mix of 10 year old American white oak and manzanilla sherry casks) are a mixed bag as well. I guess there is nothing left but to try it ourselves, eh?
The nose is immediately oily and salty, like cured ham and olives. Peat, surely, but a lot less than I would have expected. Sweet ashes. Wet earth. Rocky coast. Far from fruity or sweet like the Galileo (which I put next to it for the occassion). The salt might be from the manzanilla of course, as this dry sherry from Andalusia (Spain) is known to be a bit salty. If you leave it for five minutes, it does show a sweet side.
It is surprisingly soft on the palate. Immediately very salty, like on the nose. Quite overpowering, blocking everything else out for a few moments. Only midpalate does the meaty and sweet character surface. Nutmeg and a touch of cinnamon. Nuts, too. Almonds to be precise. Caramelized apples and some toffee now. Nice development. Mildly drying towards the end. It is only at said end that the peat shines through with a grand smokiness. I find it rather complex.
The finish is long, smoky and dry.
Like the Galileo, it may be too far away from hardcore Ardbeg to many peatfreaks. Too much manzanilla influence, they may think. But for me, it works. I find it better than the Galileo, it easily outshines the Rollercoaster and Alligator, but it is still no match for the Day, Airigh Nam Beist, Supernova, let alone the Uigeadail or Corryvreckan.