It's piled so garishly and gloriously high with a multitude of bold, intense and satisfying levels that even the magnificent ‘Burj Khalifa’ tower in Dubai, would be dwarfed by its towering might.
The first thing you get on the nose is that unmistakable trademark ‘Ardbeg’ aroma. A bold blend of medicinal peaty smoky waves that are infused by seaweed and all the bitter sweet wonders of a fruit-opian zest fest. Some sublime and subtle spices also get in on the action and act as the perfect tightrope for this truly bold and confident balancing act.
There’s all the crispy rindtabulous salty wonders of some smoked middle back bacon, that has narrowly escaped cremation after accidentlly being left under a hot grill for a tad too long.
On the palate there’s a wonderful thick chewy sensation of salted butter caramel, that has somehow managed to infuse itself with the gooey centre from a honey and lemon ‘Lockets’ lozenge. All of which have been given a generous but not overbearing grind of peppery peat.
There are bold fruit elements in the form of some wondrous juicy and very ripe ‘Pluots (Dapple Dandy)’ plums, that burst with jammy sweet plumy wonderment even before you’ve managed to complete your first bite.
More fruit, but in the slightly less exciting form of canned peaches in grape juice, which also just happen to radiate a very subtle winey element to the proceedings. You could even go as far in saying it’s a mulled wine element with all the spices that cleanly and confidently come through.
This is a phenomenally bold and balanced dram, and I would also go as far in saying that it’s one of the finest releases from ‘Ardbeg’ that I’ve tried to date.