Thanks to /u/kinohead for this sample
Welcome to a new series I’m calling “I’m Ar-begging you to stop making these puns”, in which I review all of the Ardbeg samples I’ve had sitting around, unreviewed.
I wish I knew more about Ardbeg 14 Cask 94. From what little I can find, the bottler is UD, the cask number is part of the name, and it came out in Canada. Also it’s Ardbeg, and it has an age statement. That’s pretty sweet.
At the end of the day, do we want to know much else? We have an age, we know they watered this down (for the Canadian market, what a surprise), we just don’t know who the UD people are beyond Whiskybase because I’m bad at the Google.
Let’s see how it tastes then, shall we?
Price: No longer available
Cask Type: Sherry Cask
Cask Number: 94
Number of Bottles: 350
Colour: 7.5Y 9/4
Nose: Lemon juice, caramel, smoke, seaweed, tobacco
Interesting nose. Not a big peat storm, it’s relaxed with time. Some umami, more salt then smoke, with vegetal peat showing up later. Like the caramel on the nose.
The sherry isn’t doing too much here, which is odd.
Taste: Vegetal peat, arepas, butter, red licorice
Again more vegetal and corn notes here. But almost like a worked in corn, thus the arepas. Granted that could have been just the arepas I’ve had. I wish I could have more arepas, frankly. Heck I’ll even take more bao. Naan’s nice too.
I feel some of the low alcohol is hiding something here. Or perhaps just the peat. I don’t know.
Finish: Peppery, anise, butter, coffee
Finishes with additional heat, butter, and developed earth. Again, I’m thinking the sherry didn’t add enough fruit here and added more of the earth. Granted that’s not a bad thing, because coffee.
Conclusion: An interesting dram with unique parts. To paraphrase a random Amish person once talking to Homer Simpson, “Tis a fine dram, but sure tis no Ardbeg, English”. And for some people, they may really, really enjoy more of a Highland peat, this is their alley, and it’s up there, and for once I’m not being sexual.
However this is my Ardbeg series. I miss a brash Ardbeg, or perhaps I want more than just salt on the nose. Or perhaps it was too weak and lost some of the subtle elements. None the less, it’s a well worked dram, just not one I like. So I scored it as such.
Scotch review #845, Islay review #206, Whisky Network review #1364