- Brand: Secret Islay
- ABV: 52.1%
We are very proud that MMM – Mark & Manny’s Malts – has been able to secure a collaboration for 2020 with the very talented artist Nathalie Pien. When we saw a few of her paintings at an exposition, we made contact to see if she would be interested to have some of her fantastic artwork on our labels. She was intrigued, said yes and we did a happy dance. A few weeks later we got together with Nathalie and had her imagination run wild with the whiskies we had selected. It did not take long before we had a great match. Our first release in the so-called Artist Series was a fact. It is a young, feisty yet playful Islay whisky linked to the young, feisty yet playful Aries by Nathalie.
It is immediately wonderfully peaty on the nose with lots of agrum notes – call it lemon juice if you like – plasticine, wet clay, sea weeds and brackish water. This is nicely balanced by apples and vanilla. There is a lovely medicinal note and quite some ashes. Mackarel on the barbecue. Islay pur sang.
It starts nicely sweet on apples, vanilla and caramel, before the citrus fruit shows itself. But it takes only a heartbeat for the peat to explode on the palate! The development of smoke ifs fantastic. Dirty, feisty, peaty… impossible not to like this.
The finish is smoky and sweet, medium long and puts a smile on my face (not to mention that it inspires me to pour a second measure).
Oh, this will be one long remembered. Admittedly, it’s one for the peatheads among us. Long may the winter last, for this will serve us well to keep warm.