Ardbeg Wee Beastie 5 Year Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky

Rating:
93%
(4)
Apart from the name, nothing is small about Ardbeg's newest addition to their permanent lineup. It's a 5-year-old peat monster and an incredible entry point into the world of Islay Malts.
$48.99
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Situated along the southern coast of the island of Islay, Ardbeg Distillery was founded in 1815 by the MacDougall Family. By the end of the 19th century, nearly one-third of the population of the island was employed at the distillery, which became notorious for producing some of the boldest and most robust Scotch whisky in the industry. Today, the distillery remains a testament to Scottish innovation and heritage.

Ardbeg Single Malt Scotch Whisky is made from malted barley, which is peated to approximately 50 phenol parts per million. Once the peated barley arrives at the distillery, it is milled and mashed with water sourced from Loch Uigeadail before being fermented in washbacks made of Oregon pine. While wooden washbacks are more expensive and difficult to maintain as compared to stainless steel washbacks, they absorb a portion of the heat generated during the fermentation process and thus, create a lighter and richer whisky. In addition, the wooden washbacks contribute carbolic compounds to the whisky.

Following fermentation, which lasts for 55 hours, the wash is distilled twice, first through a copper-pot wash still and then again through a copper-pot spirit still. The spirit still is equipped with a purifier, which acts as small condenser and causes a portion of the evaporating vapors to be pumped back into the pot and then re-distilled. This purification process, which is rare in the industry, results in whisky that has a signature fresh and malty flavor.

Ardbeg Wee Beastie is the newest permanent addition to their core lineup of whisky and a sign of things to come for the expanding distillery. It proudly shows its age statement, having spent 5 years in ex-bourbon and Oloroso sherry casks, before being bottled at 94.8 proof. That's a hefty alcohol volume that belies the expression's position as an entry point into the world of Ardbeg. Contrary to its name the Wee Beastie is a big, bold, and all-around proper Ardbeg. It's the smokiest in all of the permanent range and has been crafted to work especially well in cocktails as well.

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More Information
Proof 94.8 (47.4 % ABV)
Distiller/Bottler Name Ardbeg Distillery
Size 750mL
The nose is bright with herbal, vanilla, pear, black pepper, and honeyed ham notes. There's some coffee and pine resin in there as well. The palate brings chocolate, smoked bacon, eucalyptus, and aniseed to the table. Finishes long and briny with lingering cocoa and cured meat notes.
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