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This is certainly one peaty whisky. Put your nose in the glass and you are met with boggy, mossy peat, as well as leafy/papery smoke and a light mothball sweetness. Yet for all that peat it comes across soft on the nose.
It is much spicier in the mouth, though water or ice softens it. Very peaty as it spreads across the tongue. Lacks the ashen fireplace taste of some Islay malts (Caol Ila, Laphroaig), though there is considerable smoke. Not unlike a less intense Kilchoman, actually. There is a sweet quality to the taste but I find it hard to separate from the peatiness.
It finishes, needless to say, with peat flavour, dominant but not quite overpowering. Pleasant.
Balance-wise, I prefer an Islay malt with a thicker sweetness in the centre, or more citric zest. I like to feel that the malty sweetness and peaty dryness are independent of one another, though well-integrated. Therefore this one comes across as lacking in balance, though it certainly has some complexity.
Overall this whisky satisfied my craving for a good but not overpowering peated malt. Comparing from memory, it is probably a hair better than Ardmore Traditional Cask.