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Port Charlotte Scottish Barley

Average score from 4 reviews and 4 ratings 88

Port Charlotte Scottish Barley

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Port Charlotte Scottish Barley

Port Charlotte Scottish Barley is made from 100% Scottish-grown barley that has been peated to a level of 40ppm. For the maturation ex-bourbon casks were used almost exclusively, with a smaller part matured in ex-sherry casks. Port Charlotte Scottish Barley was launched in 2013.

The nose is malty and full of brine to begin with, then vanilla and apple flavours develop, backed up by some nice wood spice. Next, there are notes of lemon and lemon peel, followed by a hint of grass.

The palate is surprisingly creamy and smooth, given the high ABV of 50%. The vanilla flavours are back, this time accompanied by notes of oranges, liquorice and honey. The smoke is there but is far from being dominant and more like a notable presence in the background.

The finish is long, creamy and warming. Honey and vanilla have a major role here, too, accompanied by oranges and soft peat smoke.

Interesting! This is one of the few cases I have seen where the nose was not overly promising, only for the palate and finish to shine! After the nosing part I had tended towards the lower 80s, but both nose and palate helped improve the overall score significantly. I am repeating myself but the creaminess and the smoothness of the palate continue to amaze me. I also like the interplay between the oranges and lemons, together with the peaty presence in the background. One needs to spend some time with this fellow in order to catch all the intricacies, however this is time well spent. Overall this is very pleasant and satisfying – excellent job, Bruichladdich!

I was gifted a bottle of this over the Holidays. Looking forward to it.

@broadwayblue, enjoy! Just remember to give it some time. Excellent young stuff from Islay!


I ordered this bottle from KLwines because the Port Charlotte 10 was out.

Nose: Hint of Buttery Lemon Scones, peaty, nutty, dash of white pepper, red chili, iodine notes, slightly herbal like The Laddie 10

Palate: First taste is the peat and maritime notes, buttery lemon scones, nutty, bitter-sweet notes move throughout the dram, slightly herbal, touch of cocoa, dash of pepper and crushed chili.

Finish: The peat is more noticeable now, with graphite coming to the fore and the peat retreating slightly, to be taken over by the herbal notes and peanuts.

An odd Islay to be sure, do i love it yes it is refreshingly different. The peat is not the key flavor note of the dram instead you get the perfect marriage of Bruichladdich and peat. Reminds me of the time I added 2 teaspoons of Ardbeg to Bruichladdich 10.

Did you also try other PC versions? I wonder how this one would hold against the Peat Project or the An Turas Mor. So far, I liked the PC10 46% the most.

I tried the Scottish Barley and the Islay Barley side by side in a tasting. The Scottish seemed much better to me.


This Port Charlotte was presented by Allan Logan at the Spirits in the Sky festival during his Bruichladdich Masterclass. It is Heavily Peated (40ppm) and distilled from 100% Scottish barley. It did not get an age statement as it is composed from different vintages by their famous Master Distiller Jim McEwan.

Very assertive nose with loads of grain and (of course) peat. Then some black pepper, paprika and clear touches of charred oak. Cigar box. Walnuts. Loads of vanilla. Only then a dying bonfire on the beach with toffee and pears. Iodine and sea air make us wait, but eventually sign in. Different, but very good.

It is oily on the palate. Smoky, sure, but mostly sweet. Think barley, citrus, soft oak and toffee apples with a salty edge. Not as PC than I am used to from PC, savvy? The lemon zest at the end keeps it fresh.

The finish is medium long and a good continuation of the palate.

Absolutely good Port Charlotte, but the odd one out if you ask me. Sweeter and more accessible than its brother.


Some distilleries tend to put an emphasis on barley, and Bruichladdich is one of them. I don’t know why this trend isn’t more widespread within the whisky industry, but it certainly should be. I love that Bruichladdich advertises some of its products based on their selection of barley. I’ve yet to try the Islay Barley release, so I’ll start with the PC Scottish Barley, which is “heavily peated” at 40 ppm. The packaging even goes so far as to mention of a specific farm from which some of the barley was bought. I don’t know the percentages or details, and I don’t really care. I don’t make the stuff, but I do appreciate the fact that it is advertised as domestic barley of a certain quality. Their website touts “raw ingredients matter.” Well said.

Nose: Peat and cereal. Nice, bold smokiness. Fresh barley, big hay, wet grass, vanilla, light honey, apples, pears, peach, citrus rind, ginger, and something like ginseng. A bit of alcoholic bite, reminding us of the healthy 50% abv. Youthful and vibrant.

Palate: An ashy/medicinal greeting that is quickly tempered by a lovely honey note. The smoke here is strong and intense. Coastal spices come in next. Big salt and white pepper.

Finish: Strong, bold smoke that is both delicious and consistent. Bacon, ash, charred oak, and honey round it out. Salt, cereal, fuzzy peach candy and faint pear linger.

This is a fun cracker of a whisky. The cereal notes stand out, with a lovely barley flavour that could only be Bruichladdich. The intensity is reminiscent of the Laph 10. I also like the vibrant coastal notes, which are evocative of OP12. That peach candy note is interesting too, although I can’t think of another whisky to compare it to. These things all combine to give us quite a distinctive and lively whisky that’s definitely a solid addition to the cabinet. A precocious and brazen little Islay rascal.

Just tasting it for the first time now and your notes are spot on! Wonderful whisky indeed, that has already earned a permanent place in my cabinet. It does have character reminiscent of OP12's maritime theme while the peat boldly states Islay heritage. Also, I've always been slightly wary of E150 and chill filtration arguments. This malt has neither(according to Bruichladdich) and I can almost taste the difference in quality. Hats off to Bruichladdich for doing it right and to you Hunggar for a top notch review!

@Victor You have a topic for a great discussion : Which malt do you think is very good in itself without any finish? I myself am thinking of some big names and some not so big.Here are a few: Glenlivett, Glendronach, Cragganmore and ... I don't have enough experience with unpeated Islay to prononce myself about there malts which is very sad in any way you can think of.

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