A New Islay Scotch Whisky Arrives in America!
A special release whisky from a two hundred year old distillery, the Ardbeg Perpetuum, is due to hit the American market on May 30.
Ardbeg, the peatiest, most powerful of Islay’s many macho, kick-your-ass, take-no-prisoners peat monsters, the ultimate my-malts-peatier-than-your-malt malt, is set to release a special edition to celebrate its 200th anniversary.
Islay in 1815 must have been dreary place – lots of wind, lots of rain, lots of sheep and not much else. No wonder the inhabitants developed a line of robust, to put it mildly, whiskies to help them get through the long, dark winters.
All this led me to expect Perpetuum to be Ardbeg on steroids, but I have just tasted a pre-release sample, and am really pleased to report it’s not the latest entrant in the World’s Peatiest Malt Competition, but an altogether more subtle dram.
Rather than being the peat bomb I expected, it’s sweeter, lighter and more floral than the standard Ardbeg. It still had its progenitor’s tar and charcoal and spice and peat, but here they’re balanced by sweeter elements like vanilla, caramel and milk chocolate.
- Nick Harborne