It’s finally here! The hotly anticipated official release of Ardbeg Alligator we have been chasing this for some time extremely hard to get now.
Ardbeg’s Bill Lumsden, has taken a different approach by expanding on the unique use of new American White Oak. The new oak, when heavily charred, does not release the ‘off’ taints of a used barrel. Instead the drinker is presented with a myriad of toasty, savoury, barbequed aromas and flavours. When expertly blended with Ardbeg’s signature first fill Bourbon white oak casks the result is distinctive and impressive.
It’s aged in a similar style to the standard 10 Year Old, except for the fact that a portion of the whisky was aged in heavily charred barrels. The barrels are charred to such an extent that they start to crack a little on the inside, and this resembles alligator skin, thus the name
Nose: Stunning aromas of charcoal, mulled wine and lemon icing sugar. Very creamy, with notes of vanilla and yoghurt, with a huge BBQ note. Some gingerbread and tangy apricots, and burning brown sugar.
Palate: Creamy and zesty, with a huge whack of grapefruit and lemon, as well as BBQ sauce, ginger and orange zest. Like a really toasty rye whiskey in parts, with hints of icing sugar, cocoa, gingernut biscuits and intense smoke.
Finish: Sweet and creamy with peppery, crackling peat smouldering away for hours.
Overall: One of the best Ardbegs we’ve ever tasted. A mind-blowing malt!
The smile and peat are still there but it has been smoothed out without losing the essential qualities that makes Islay Islay.