Archive for the ‘Tobermory (Ledaig)’ Category

Claxton’s The Single Cask Ledaig 2008 (8 year old) 52.8%

Refill Sherry Butt 1606-700713/ Dist: May 2008 Btl: 2016/ Tasted: Sept 2016

The nose is clean, softly peated, but very briny and phenolic. Hints of smoked meat, malt and tar. This must have been a very refilled sherry butt as the sherry character is virtually imperceptible bar a touch of oxidised fruit. With time it becomes lightly medicinal.

The palate is soft and full, opening with creamy barley followed by earthy-peat, coffee and subtle spices. Again not much in the way of sherry character but the middle is pleasantly coastal and fishy. Long and crisp with the salt, peat and sweet barley lingering.

Claxton’s ‘The Single Cask’ Ledaig 2007 (9 year old) 53.3%

Bourbon Hogshead/ Dist: Jun 2007 Btl: 2017/ Tasted: Apr 2017

Aromas of sweet barley, white fruit and peat dust, followed by gritty and phenolic slabs of peat and brine. Fresh and very old skool Caol Ila-like with the peat becoming slightly manure.

The palate opens in the same manner as the nose with sweet barley and dusty peat. It’s a little fuller feeling with some milky oak noticeable along with a touch of honey. Very clean with a touch of heather, earthy peat and tar. Wonderfully vibrant middle with a long, white fruit and sweet barley finish accented by the peat dust.

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Coopers Choice Ledaig 1998 (17 year old) 56.5%

Sherry Butt 35/ Dist: 19988 Btl: 2015/ Tasted: May 2016

A leafy, herbal and slightly medicinal nose with hints of peat and sulphur. Slightly rubbery with building herbal peat, fisherman’s friends and yet more rubber.

The palate opens with the sulphur tainted Oloroso. Slightly medicinal, peaty/ sooty and rubbery, but nowhere near as interesting and complex as the nose. In fact the sulphur taint is a lot more conspicuous and lingers throughout.

Carn Mor Celebration of the Cask Ledaig 1997 (17 year old) 49.7%

Bourbon Cask 643080/ Dist: Oct 1997 Btl: Nov 2014/ Tasted: Mar 2015

The nose opens with a little murky ‘distillery character’ and plenty of peat. Hints of manure, tar and faint parma violets follow along with a touch of heather. Underneath lies some barley’d fruit, which gives depth.

The palate is reasonably clean, although there is touch of industrial ‘distillery character’. Hints of coffee, peat and tar come through with a pleasant saltiness. Lovely intense finish. Quite mouth-watering with lingering dry peat. Another pleasant bottle of Ledaig, which shows plenty of substance to balance the ‘distillery character’.

Carn Mor Celebration of the Cask Lediag 1997 (18 year old) 55.6%

Bourbon Hogshead/ Dist: 1997 Btl: 2016/ Tasted: Apr 2016

Quite feinty and slightly metallic to begin with hard barley and sweet vanilla. The manurey peat duly arrives and continues to develop and dominate the nose. With time hints of coffee and subtle coastal notes appear.

The palate opens with the dry, dusty peat and a touch of cardboard. Again quite earthy, manurey and rubbery with hints of sweet barley and lightly medicinal, herbal peat. Lovely juicy middle but there is a slight feintness in the background. Long and lightly coffee’d and manurey finish with a drying coastal after-taste.

Carn Mor Celebration of the Cask Ledaig 1997 (19 year old) 52.9%

Bourbon Hogshead/ Dist: 1997 Btl: Feb 2017/ Tasted: Jan 2017

Stinky and sulphury on the nose with hints of coastal white fruit and manurey peat. Light sugar coated baked barley beneath with developing smoked meat and peat smoke. Given time the nose does settle down but it’s still a little dirty.

The palate is edgy and slightly sulphurous with white fruit. A touch of honey and slightly sweet barley attempt to balance but the manurey, dirty peat comes through on the middle with some salt and bitter spice. Short, intense with a strange dirty sweet/citric finish and a bitter, tar and treacle after-taste. By old Ledaig standards it’s not too bad but it’s still a bit rough and ready!


Carn Mor Strictly Limited Ledaig 2008 (7 year old) 46%

Refill Sherry Puncheon/ Dist: 2008 Btl: 2015/ Tasted: Aug 2015

Given its distinct lack of colour this was aged in a very well used sherry puncheon! The nose is slightly feinty but the there is plenty of sweet barley to offset that. Lightly fishy with hints of coal/ peat dust and with time a slight, herbal, almost grain-like note appears.

The palate opens with the sweet barley, malt biscuits and lightly oiled, earthy peat. Pretty clean and lacking the usual ‘Ledaig’ character with a touch of chocolate and a subtle dried fruit note. Long and still quite sweet with a peppery and salty, coffee’d finish.

Carn Mor Strictly Limited Ledaig 2008 (8 year old) 46%

Refill Sherry Butt/ Dist: 2008 Btl: 2016/ Tasted: Sept 2016

Meaty and smoky aromas with dusty but sweet peat, salt and a very subtle, (almost to the point of imperceptibility) sherry sweetness. It is a little raw with late botanical notes.

The palate is a little un-evolved with some ‘off the still’ oiliness and hints of peat, pepper and herbs. Still the spirit is very clean with a touch of barley and subtle salt and spice notes. Long with a pleasant dusty peat finish with an almost pulped agave fruit finish. Maybe it could have done with another couple of years in the cask.

Highland Laird Ledaig 2005 (9 year old?) 53.7%

Tasted: Nov 2014

Fresh, briny and fishy. The peat has an earthy, manurey Islay-like character. Amazingly clean (i.e. lacking the usual wet cardboard notes). Bracing and citric with even a touch of pineapple. Good god when did Ledaig have fruit? Late notes of bog myrtle and woody spice.

Soft and lightly barley’d on the palate. Showing a little more oak which takes the edge of the brininess, but not overtly so. Not as exuberantly peated as the nose but there’s still enough! Very long and fresh with hints of herbs, parma violets and sweet, dusty peat. Again blemish free with a lightly oily and tarry finish. Is the distillery taking more care with its cut points? I guess time will tell.

Douglas of Drumlanrig Ledaig 1993 (20 year old) 46%

Refill Hogshead LD9859/ Dist: Mar 1993 Btl: Jun 2013/ Tasted: Sept 2014

A dusty and softly spiced nose with citrus, stewed fruit and a touch of ‘distillery character’. With time there is a waft of peat and toffee’d oak. 

The palate is soft and toffee’d with hints of soft, stewed fruit and bittering spice. A little tart citrus comes through on the middle along with a touch of salt. Short and citrusy finish with the toffee’d oak returning.

William Cadenhead Ledaig 15 Years Old 56%

Tasted: Oct 2013

Nose: Stinky aromas of wet cardboard, coastal-peat along with a distinct metallic twang. Hmm, could only come from one distillery! Water makes the cardboard notes even soggier!

Palate: Quite sweet with plenty of barley to begin with, but the wet cardboard-peat lurks uninvited in the background. With time it becomes murkier and more industrial. Diluted it’s vapid and oily with some burnt notes.

Finish: Hard, short and alcoholic with lingering cardboard and ash.

Conclusion. I love this!……… Not!

Douglas McGibbon Provenance Ledaig 2005 (7 year old) 46%

Bourbon/ Code: PRV0983/ Dist: Oct 2002 Btl: Apr 2013/ Tasted: May 2013

I don’t tend to mention the colour of spirits much, but this one was practically water-white. Immediately that alerted me to the fact that this wouldn’t be much in the way of wood character evident. And….. I was correct. The nose is young, cardboardy and cereally. Quite smoky and astringent with plenty of wet cardboardy peat. Classic Ledaig!

The palate is likewise, young with some sweet barley to begin with followed by coal dusty/ tarry peat and a little wet cardboardy. A very dusty finish with the peat becoming a little sweeter and some coastal notes appearing. I have to say that the palate is a lot more interesting than the nose.

Douglas McGibbon Provenance Ledaig 2008 (7 year old) 46%

Refill Bourbon Barrel/ Code: PRV1180/ DL11090

Dist: Aug 2008 Btl: Mar 2016/ Tasted: Apr 2016

Opens with a profusion of lime and oily, petrolly white fruit. Hints of manurey peat, dusty barley, seaweed, smoked bacon and salt appear along with a hint of violets.

The palate is lightly sooty and lightly feinty with hints of barley, white fruit and developing, dry peat smoke. A good fruit sweetness balances along with a touch of oak. Long and sooty with crisp, salt laden barley, citrus and violets. Pleasantly balanced!

Douglas McGibbon Provenance Ledaig 2005 (8 year old) 46%

Bourbon/ Code: PRV1106/ Dist: Sept 2005 Btl: Apr 2015/ Tasted: Jun 2015

Quite clean aromas of tarry-oil cut through with fresh sea salt notes. Pleasant combination of dusty peat and sweet peat with underlying barley and fruit.

Soft, full and quite vanilla’d with gentle peat. Again clean and fresh with hints of tar and citrus. Good sooty finish with a touch of sweet parma violets in the finish.

Malts Of Scotland Ledaig 2005 (9 year old) 53.6%

Bourbon/ Tasted: July 2012

A very pungent, raw nose of earthy peat and brine. Youthful and alcoholic. With time some slightly soapy, graphite and farmyard aromas emerge. With water there is a faint wet cardboard note. Still quite fishy and youthful. 

Lightly oiled cereal and gentle(ish) earthy peat on the palate. There is a touch of sweet barley husks but it’s extremely young. With water it becomes a bit watery, although some creamy oak has emerged. Ok length with a vegetal peat finish. Water makes it pleasantly sweet with a touch of smoke and violets. Conclusion: Relatively entertaining neat, but slightly insipid when diluted but a pleasant finish. In fact it all comes through on the finish, but that cardboard note seems to imply it’s a young Ledaig. 

Malts Of Scotland Ledaig 1998 (14 year old) 61.2%

Sherry/ Tasted: July 2012

A big, leafy, Oloroso and alcohol dominated nose. Some astringent, fishy notes attempt to counter the abundant dried fruit. Gently peated with a touch of manure, charcoal and rubber emerge with time as the Oloroso subsides a bit. Water does make the aromas seem a tad thinner and emphasises it’s stinky, manurey character. Seriously enjoyable though! 

Quite gentle but pungent. Burnt toffee and rubber mingles with the sherry wood. It’s a bit hard going to be honest with all that alcohol and wood tannins. A drop of water thankfully softens and does emphasise the peat and dries fruit but makes it feel a touch homogenous. Quite a sweetly peated finish. Mouth-wateringly intense give the high abv, but still reasonably long with some lingering peat smoke. Water lengthens and brings out a slight sugar coating and bonfire note. Still quite peaty! Conclusion: Neat it could be mistaken for an Islay. If one was being over critical it is all about the peat and sherry, but the sherry is exceedingly clean.

Signatory Ledaig 1993 (8 year old) 43%

Bourbon Cask 74/ Dist: Feb 1993 Btl: July 2001/ Tasted: May 2005

Again an ‘off the still’ nose with some sweet malt, cereal, light orange and earth. The oak adds some buttery notes, but where’s the peat? Dry on the palate, slightly oily, slightly sweet cereal but lacking any discernable fruit or other flavours and still no peat!

James McArthur Old Masters Ledaig 1993 (11 year old) 56.1%

Bourbon Cask 272/ Dist: 1993 Btl: 2004/ Tasted: Nov 2006

A young, clean and crisp nose. Very salty with some sharp lemon notes, hints of peat smoke and earth followed by buttery vanilla. Dry, crisp palate of salty citrus fruits. Quite phenolic, yet softly peated. The drying alcohol dominates the palate and it finishes with some high toned botanicals, but surprisingly no wet cardboard! 

Water emphasises its youth by bringing out the oily lanolin and cereal on the nose, but on the palate it makes it really fruity (shock!) however that sensation is a bit fleeting, yet some peppery spice steps into the breech as does the oak. Again finishing with that botanical note. Not bad for a Ledaig!