Ardbeg 1999 10 YO Chieftain’s Choice, 57,6 %
The last meeting in one of the whisky clubs I am a part of there was a smoky line-up of Ardbegs and Laphroaigs. It was one of the board members leading the tasting. We had Ardbeg 10 YO and Laphroaig 10 YO, and then Ardbeg Uigedail 2014 release and Laphroaig PX. None of them new to me, but very interesting to get the chance to compare the two distilleries.
And then, out of nowhere, he conjured up an independent bottling of Ardbeg from Ian Macleod, a 10 YO Ardbeg from 1999 released in the Chieftain’s Choice series. Cool!
The whisky was distilled May 1999 and bottled 2009. It was matured in barrel #116 that gave 186 bottles.
Nose (23/25): Mild, gentle and rich at the same time. Citrus and licorice in a perfect combination (like the candy Fox!). Typical Ardberg, I would say. The smoke was hiding in the background, wrapping the lemon and licorice.
Taste (24/25): Wow! What an explosion of tastes. Warm and rich. A lot of lemons and licorice. Lemon caramel, again (Fox). Ash and smoke. Hotly!
Finish (22/25): A warm and lingering finish with lemon and licorice, still.
Balance (23/25): I must say this was a well balanced whisky and a typical Ardbeg with all its lemon and licorice. While I said the smell was gentle, the taste certainly made me go wow!
Thanks, Mads, for this lovely whisky!