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The Peat Monster is again a little work of art by John Glaser, the whisky zealot from Compass Box. This blended malt (previously ‘vatted malt’) comprises Caol Ila, Laphroaig and Ardmore, all matured on American ex-bourbon casks.
The nose is smoky, with sweet peat, banana and what reminds you of a campfire on the beach. There is a seabreeze, even a touch of brine. Coal Ila definitely plays first fiddle in this concert. Then there is also orange peel (sweet and bitter at the same time) and a hint of molasses. Finally a prominent medicinal touch.
It’s quite oily and chewy on the palate. The honey and vanilla (from the Ardmore?) are there, but it’s the seaweeds and smoked eel that steal the footlight. There is a metallic touch there as well. And at the end there is some hay (organics). Very complex and very much worth the effort.
The finish is an encore for the sweet peat and oak.
I’ve had some Islay whiskies before and cannot agree with the name of this one. Sure, it’s peated. But a peat monster? Let’s say a peat beast. It’s a very accessible, peated whisky. ‘Black Bottle Deluxe’. Costs around 40 EUR. There is even a limited edition called The Peat Monster Reserve, a magnum (1,5 litre), bottled at 48,9%, even richer and peatier (and more expensive : approx. 100 EUR).