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Bruichladdich distillery is located on the north shore of Loch Indaal on Islay, near the town of Port Charlotte. It was built in 1881 by the Harvey brothers who were a dynastic whisky family that had owned two Glasgow distilleries since 1770. Using an inheritance, the three brothers combined their talents to build a third distillery – Bruichladdich – designed by John, engineered by Robert, and financed by William and other family members. Bruichladdich remained in possession of the Harvey family until 1929 when the distillery was mothballed. Over the next sixty-five years Bruichladdich changed owners several times and narrowly avoided closure until January 1995 when it was shut down as being 'surplus to requirements'. In December 2000 the distillery was purchased by a group of private investors led by Mark Reynier of Murray McDavid, and production restarted in May 2001. In July 2012 Bruichladdich was acquired by drinks conglomerate Rémy Cointreau. The Laddie Sixteen was first released in 2012; at the time of writing it is about to become available only at the distillery.
The nose is fruity and rich, with vanilla fudge, lemon and ginger coming to the fore. Later on there are banana and biscuity flavours. By all means this is a superbly enticing nose, well done!
The palate is medium-bodied and smooth. Vanilla and lemon biscuits carry the day, followed by lemon and grassy flavours. Towards the end the oak influence gets quite strong, resulting in a dry and spicy palate.
The finish is of medium length and rather dry. There are hints of ginger and, astonishingly, green tea. Some saltiness creeps in at the end.
I love this Bruichladdich standard expression. It is lush, rich and quite simply proof of the distillery’s superb craftsmanship. This is what single malts are all about. No complaints here – well done, Jim McEwan!