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I love peated whiskies. Peat Monster is a blend of malts from Islay, Island and Highland. In Quebec its price is similar to the price of Laphroaig QC, Benriach Curiositas and Benriach Arumaticus. So there's a lot of competition in this price range with some very good offering. So lets see how does this Peat Monster. The bottle reviewed has 40% of its content left and has been for about 4 months.
Nose: Of course I have some peat but no monster. With the usual smoke there is a faint bacon aroma for which you have to work hard to detect. There is also some clear green hay, light iodine, some vanilla and a mix of menthol and light pine that gives it a clean freshness that does not quite work with the dirtier peat and smoke.
Palate: The peat is heavier with more salt but the green hay is still very present. The sweetness comes in with a lot more spice than on the nose. The meaty flavor that comes at the end is more evident than on the nose but does not last for very long. The smoke is stronger and with an ashy side.
Finish: It is not short but the best flavors are not those that last. The meaty flavor is missing and the smoke lack is ashy side and the sweetness diminished too fast.
Balance: The green hay combine with the menthol pine mix are too much in the front for me. The balance is ok but not very good. Larger sip restore more then a bit the balance on the palate but does not change the nose or the finish.
Conclusion: This bottle was better freshly opened. The problem is that it has a double personality. It doesn't know if it should be a refined dram with light flavors or a more bold and dirty grinder ( or sailor) that punches you in the face. For the same price, I prefer the Laphroaig and the Benriach Arumaticus. Peat Monster, when freshly opened, is better than Curiositas; unfortunately, with more air it shows its limits.