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Ardbeg Auriverdes

Saudade do Brasil

0 1680

@VictorReview by @Victor

28th Sep 2014

0

  • Nose
    24
  • Taste
    19
  • Finish
    18
  • Balance
    19
  • Overall
    80

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Distribution of ratings for this: brand user

Ardbeg Auriverdes is the 2014 Ardbeg Day bottling. Green and gold are the colours of Brasil, at which the 2014 World Cup was held. 'Saudade' is the one word which describes the very soul of Brazil. Pronounced in Rio de Janeiro "sow dodgee", the word means nostalgic longing. Merely saying this word will touch the heart of almost every Brazilian. Almost all expatriate Brasilians have some degree of 'saudade do Brasil'.

The reviewed sample was compliments of @Nock, from a bottle 1/3 full and open 11 weeks

Nose: nice strong-intensity sharply-edged nose; there is plenty of peat and smoke, but some very nice sweet brown sugar, almost thickened maple-syrup. I am getting some pear and apple fruitiness, along with noticeable caramel and vanilla, more of these last two than I usually notice on Ardbeg noses. I am loving this nose

Taste: I wish that this nose translated to the palate. I do not find that it does. The palate is big on burnt caramel combined with bitter peat and smoke. Wood tannins seem huge here. There is a slight touch of wine influence. The palate moves more toward the sour and bitter midway through the delivery

Finish: plenty of flavour, but it is strongly sour and bitter, with some soft sweetness in the background. The resulting combination is neither balanced nor delicious

Balance: no, this is not very balanced. Peat lovers can love the heavy peat flavours. This one rates pretty low for me among Ardbegs, though I do love the nose. Strong flavours and plenty of peat and smoke are not enough to make me love this whisky

(Water added fuses both the nose and palatal flavours. It does not improve the flavours.)

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16 comments

Rigmorole commented

I tasted a few glasses at Mick's in Oregon City. Yes, I concur on most counts but the balance was a bit better in the tastes I had of this whisky. Be this at it may, I did not opt to buy a bottle. I agree with your general sentiments as usual Victor. Well done. Very informative and spot-on review.

5 years ago 0

Rigmorole commented

I wasn't blown away by the Ardbog either, but I regret not buying a bottle of that one.

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@rigmorole, thank you for your comments. I much preferred Ardbog to Auriverdes, though I liked the Brasil theme of Auriverdes. Actually, if it is true, as they say, that many Master Distillers put together whiskies by nosing them and never tasting them, then that could fully explain a whisky like Auriverdes, with a great nose which is not translated to the palate.

Frankly, I cannot in any way understand this totally fallacious assumption that a nose will translate to the palate. I have seen far too many whiskies for which this is not true.

5 years ago 0

@Benancio
Benancio commented

Victor, thx for excellent and honest review. I love most Ardbeg but I'll pass on this one, spend my money on other bottles. Do you find that Ardbeg doesn't take water well? I have the 10y, Uigeadail and Corryvreckan. When I add water to them they seem loose smoke and thin out. I don't get this with Laphroaig, Lagavulin.

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@Benancio, thank you for your comments. I rarely add water to any Ardbeg whisky, and always prefer them without water. But then, I rarely add water to any Laphroaig or Lagavulin, either.

All told, the number of whiskies which I like with water is small, and the number which I would prefer with water is very small. I would be more helpful with comments about the addition of water if I could.

5 years ago 0

@Robert99
Robert99 commented

Thanks for the review, I will definetely not buy that one. I find that Ardbeg are losing themselves when they go too sweet. I do prefer when they let their wonderful mineral water do the work but I know this is less of a crowd pleaser then. I even find that the latest release of the Ten had too much vanilla for my liking. But that is just me and probably the sales are saying otherwise.

5 years ago 0

@sengjc
sengjc commented

Thanks for the review. I did get a couple of bottles just for the collection. I guess they will stay unopened.

5 years ago 0

@Pierre_W
Pierre_W commented

Many thanks for a solid review, @Victor. In my opinion it is mostly the palate where the younger Ardbeg releases don't deliver - something that your review seems to confirm. In comparison with the nose the palate frequently turns out to be below par. I have my own bottle open and hope to post tasting notes soon.

5 years ago 0

@Benancio
Benancio commented

@Victor. I'm with you on this one. I rarely use water and prefer my whiskey at 95 proof or better. Most of my scotch buddy's add a little water or small shaving of ice. When we share a dram with them I'll indulge and add a drop, I rarely notice a big difference. When I'm at home it's neat.

I read your review of OGD 114 and bought two bottles. I sampled an unopened bottle with Bookers and E. H. Taylor cask strength. It might not have been a fair compassion. OGD 114 is a great value and pretty dram good bourbon. Coming in third to the other two is not a put down. I decided to add a cap full of ice water to the OGD 114, it made a noticeable difference. The tobacco, caramel and wood opened up nicely, enough to hold its own. If you get the chance let me know if you get the same effect? I should have posted this on your OGD 114 review and I might.

5 years ago 0

@Ol_Jas
Ol_Jas commented

About nosing v. tasting: The very interesting Whisky Advocate blog article about master blenders only ever smelling (and not tasting!) the whiskies they blend is here:

whiskyadvocate.com/whisky/2009/…

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@OlJas, thanks for providing the excellent link. I am in complete agreement with the writer of this article. Expecting nosing without tasting to work for selecting and blending whisky is absolute madness, in my opinion.

Also, as much as I love an excellent nose, and I most certainly DO,...the nose of a whisky does NOT overshadow my tasting experience of that whisky.

5 years ago 0

@Nock
Nock commented

@Victor always a delight to read your reviews EVEN when I disagree. I can't deny what you say about the nose or the palate. It does have a lot of wood tannins and it does move to sour and bitter. And I think you are spot on with the finish: strong flavor, soft sweetness with sour and bitter. And I agree that the balance it the weakest point of the whisky.

So I find it funny to both agree and disagree. I actually really like it! I will wait to review my bottle until a few more tasting but after only two tasting so far my scores are right at 89. So we would both call it an 8 out of 10. But at opposite ends of the "8." Cheers my friend!

I am very grateful for you securing me two bottles. Glad you have your answer for this one. Oddly, there are still 9 bottles of it on the shelf at my "usual" store.

5 years ago 0

@Nock
Nock commented

How to drink like a blender: take a cask strength sample, add water to lower the ABV to 20%, nose in a blue copita glass, and pour out.

So not only are they not tasting the whisky, they are nosing it far differently than all whisky drinkers.

For me a whisky cut to 20% is drowned out. At one point I actually experimented with a few whiskies just to see if I could “get it” . . . never again.

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

@Nock, thanks for joining in. You and I see most matters of whisky taste rather similarly. The biggest difference in taste between us, I would say, has to do with BITTER. You love bitter. From what I've seen there is no amount of bitter which is too much for you. And bitter as the dominant flavour is not only fine with you, it is usually highly desirable to you.

As for me, I can enjoy and accommodate bitter, but for me bitter often becomes too much and destroys the harmony of a whisky, and I only rarely like it as the dominant flavour type. Also, if the whisky didn't start bitter, I usually don't enjoy it to finish bitter. For me, bitter moving toward sweet works much better than sweet moving toward bitter.

5 years ago 0

@Nock
Nock commented

You are correct sir. I actually really do enjoy a strong bitter flavor (and liquorice or anise). I understand your position and totally understand why bourbon and rye are your drink of choice (far less bitter swimming around in those).

For me the bitter is necessary to balance out the sweetness.

I find it interesting how you have correctly identified your own preference for bitter moving toward sweet. For me I would rather have sweet moving toward bitter. And I would say that this is classic Ardbeg! I believe that the majority of Ardbeg's will start of very sweet on the nose. However, the finish can often turn bitter (especially on older Ardbegs).

So for me this bottle is more reminiscent of classic Ardbeg. I could drink the mess out of it (and will!)

There are still 7 bottles on a shelf near me. If I can't find a bottle of SN2014 before too long I might break down and console myself with another bottle!

5 years ago 0

@Victor
Victor commented

Ardbeg Auriverdes on New Year's night with @Dramlette. @Dramlette is liking the palate greatly. With this older sample astringent dry bitter black licorice is the main suit on the palate. I am enjoying this Auriverdes tonight too, but probably still only 82 pts worth.

5 years ago 0

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