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Ardbeg Drum (Committee Release)

The year’s most noteworthy release: Ardbeg Drum is a no-age statement single malt initially aged in ex-bourbon barrels and then finished in rum casks. Like previous Fèis Ìle bottlings, Ardbeg has released two versions. This one, bottled at 52% ABV, is sold exclusively to Ardbeg Committee Members. Not surprisingly, it has great appeal to Islay…

My kind of GP

Especially during prohibition. See: Winston Churchill Gets a Doctor’s Note to Drink “Unlimited” Alcohol in Prohibition America (1932) “I do not wish to be hurt any more. Give me chloroform or something,” he directed, while waiting for the anesthetist. ***** [Otto Pickhardt] is perhaps best known as the doctor who treated Winston Churchill when he was hit…

Laphroaig Lore

I own enough square footage (albeit not contiguously) of Laphroaig to build a decent sized detached house on. Last night I tried Lore for the first time and my default scepticism was immediately and absolutely blown away. This was possibly the greatest all round Islay I’ve ever had. If I were to offer an analogy…

Isle of Jura Superstition

As ever, a most thoughtful assessment from Jason Debly. As an Islay “peathead” myself, I don’t think that this would disappoint others. Jason, I notice, has also weighed in on the recent Crown Royal kerfuffle which I mentioned here. alcoholJason DeblyjuraqualiaScotch whiskysingle malt

Smokehead Islay

This mystery Islay (we don’t know the distillery) doesn’t live up to the packaging hyperbole — I can’t figure out who the target demographic is. I don’t think that there is such a thing as an “entry level” Islay — if one is going to try one for the first time, one might just as well…

Glenfarclas 17

As someone with a preference for Islays, Glenfarclas 17 came over as what I can only describe as “muscular” (others say “robust”) especially so for a Speyside. It did grow on me however. Here are some more articulate reviews. Master of Malt The Scotch Noob Jason’s Scotch Whiskey Reviews Master taster Horst Lüning’s gushing assessment: alcoholGlenfarclas 17Horst LüningIslayScotch…

Shackelton’s Scotch

H/T to my chum and fellow scotch aficionado Peter Brooks for pointing to this article. Talk about whisky on ice: Three bottles of rare, 19th century Scotch found beneath the floor boards of Antarctic explorer Ernest Shackelton’s abandoned expedition base were returned to the polar continent Saturday after a distiller flew them to Scotland to…