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Tonight I attended a Companions Of The Quaich dinner in Oakville, with Jim McEwan showcasing some Bruichladdich malts. I was fortunate enough to not only get a chance to buy a 15 Year Old 2nd Edition, but won a bottle of The Organic. I had Jim sign the 15 Year Old bottle (so I'm not opening that one), but here is my review of The Organic.
It is a bright, beautiful pale straw colour, very pretty. On the nose, you understand why it is called The Organic - very malty and mossy (like turned earth somehow), with lemon zest and candied fruit. A little water brings out more moss, which is nice.
On the palate you are hit with a burst of lemon. In the middle, a dry pastry-like flavour and a hint of vanilla. It's almost like a lemon meringue pie but at half-strength! Very clean and crisp - and with a little water, some pear comes out.
The finish is a little short - maybe medium length but too mossy, almost vegetative. This is a very well balanced whisky - all the elements are very harmonious - but all together it does feel a little underwhelming. Bright and lovely and nice but no real kick, nothing to jump out at you. It was served with the first soup course (just after the Classic) and it works as an apertif dram.
If you are curious, the other expressions (besides The Classic and The Organic) were the 15 Year Old 2nd Edition (my personal favourite), The 16 Year Old Bourbon Cask and the Port Charlotte (which I also liked very much). And McEwan, the rock star that he is, entertained everyone with stories, jokes, and even a couple of sing-a-longs (to a song about him, of course; the man's ego knows no bounds). It was a great evening, however it will not be repeated - he said it will be his last trip to Canada as he is retiring next August to spend more time with his grandchildren. What Bruichladdich will do without him is anyone's guess; he is their Steve Jobs.