Bruichladdich Black Art 2 [Feather’s Flight Review Set #10]

Bruichladdich Black Art 2 1

Back at The Feather’s Pub[1] again, drinking away a little stress. Not in that alcoholic way. More so in that “Taking an hour to pick apart a dram so I don’t have to think about my exam in a week” way. That doesn’t involve getting drunk.

It’s a complicated life.

My wife has bought a new camera. Thus it’s the perfect time for me to buy an expensive dram at a pub I like.

That’s my story, and I’m sticking to it. Also I wanted to try some of this before other whisky nerds found out they had it and stormed the castle, as it were.

I really didn’t think I’d ever have a chance to try Bruichladdich Black Art 2. I own Numero 4, I fluked into a swap for Numero 3, and I’ve written off Numero 1 as lost to the ages. Also I missed buying Numero 2 because it was a tad expensive.

And I’m an idiot.

For those of you who don’t know, little is released about the Black Art series. It’s made by Jim McEwan who tells no one else what he’s doing with it. You have an age statement, an Abv that seems to denote cask strength, and an influence that seems to denote sherry casks.

So, I’m lucky enough to try this, so let’s see if it was worth $24 an ounce.

Bruichladdich Black Art 2 2

Price: No Longer available at the LCBO

Region: Islay

Age: 21 years

Vintage: 1989

Abv: 49.7%

Colour: 7.5 YR 3/10

Nose: Strawberry, anise, currant, chocolate, toffee, ginger, cinnamon, floral, plum, Sprite, raspberry, peanuts, blackberry pie, spruce trees

Holy crap. /u/dustlesswalnut was right about this one…This is right mental.

You get one note at a time. Nothing clashes at all. Any good notes that pair well may come forward together, yet never anything bad.

Hot damn I could write notes on this all day. So complex.

Taste: Lemon, butter, currant, toffee, leather, chestnut, BBQ sauce, anise, pepper bacon

Bit more ‘reserved’ on the taste, if only because the nose was a little more random and complicated.

That’s not to say this isn’t the tits. Because this is amazing tits. And if you’re not into tits, just replace tits with whatever body part you really like. Or ice cream, or something else. It’s that.

There’s a light smoke mixed with a buttery acidic note and some nuts and spice and a lot more.

Finish: Baking with my grandmother, cranberry, smoke, mushroom, butter, swimming in a lake, smoked cheddar, ginger, elk tenderloin

I guess I should clarify: Sometimes really good whisky sets off memories. This one did that. Thus it’s already one of the better ones.

The baking note reminds me of spices, different ingredients, chocolate, excitement, new opportunities, and doing something I love, with someone I loved quite a bit.

The swimming note goes to a mixture of freshness, outside smells/flavours, algae, lily pad flowers, and happiness.

Conclusion: Well damn, this is amazing. Honestly, buy it. Just go and buy it. It’s complex, crazy, and a lot of fun.

Did it set off memories left, right and center? No, however it’s quite complex. Not the best whisky, but really, really fucking close to the best whisky. Kinda like how panties aren’t the best thing on the planet, but they’re next to the best thing.

Or to put it in a way that may not make you uncomfortable: This is a complex, amazingly well put together dram. The 3 had the issue that the complexity was there, however it was paired back and disorganized. The 2 does the nose right, the taste right, and the finish beautifully.

You may not enjoy it if you can’t wrap your head around it being hard to pin down.


Scotch review #343, Islay review #76, Whisky Network review #510

1001 Whiskies to taste before you die review #232

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