Ardbeg Blaaack (2020 Committee Release)

Peated Single Malt

Ardbeg // Islay, Scotland

    Filter
    Sort
  1. ShatteredArm

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
    The pinot noir finish is really working well for me. Not sure if I'd call it a good value, but I definitely don't regret buying it.
    150.0 USD per Bottle
    Magnum's Cigars Wine & Liquor
  2. Spamin76

    Tasted
    4.25
    4.25 out of 5 stars
    Peaty nose, with some briney notes. I can definitely get some of the red fruit aromas from the wine, but they don't jump right out. I get maybe a mix of cherry or plum as well as red apple. The taste has a peaty, dry smoke, but it's not as strong as some other Ardbeg releases. I feel like Ardbeg often has a bit of a vegetal character, and I'm having trouble finding it here, perhaps the fruity wine notes cancel it out. I am also getting a baked apple flavor as it sits in the glass, although it's not overly sweet. In the finish, I get some salt and pepper and maybe some pine needles or pine resin. I also get some mellower red fruit. I feel like the wine fruit, maybe tames the Ardbeg a bit, for better and worse. They play nice together... maybe too nice, considering that this is one of the Islay heavyweights. The finish is quite lingering- it's dry spicy smoke with peppery waves... but I think some of the pepper may be coming from the wine as much as from the whiskey. If anything, this is smoother and quite a bit easier drinking than I had expected, which is not necessarily a bad thing, but possibly dangerous to sobriety and pocketbook. I like this. I'm not sure that I love it, considering this was well north of $100. Supernova is better, and the price isn't that much different. I will say that the pinot noir brings something interesting and different, and it actually works pretty well, but it's not going down in history as a classic and celebrated combo. If anything, I'd actually recommend buying a few moderately priced bottles of pinot noir if you are going to invest in this, if you don't have a lot of previous wine experience. I'm a whiskey drinker first and foremost, but I've polished off plenty of bottles of pinot over the years, and I think a lot of the interesting aspects of this whiskey would be lost on someone who didn't already have some wine background. Actually, this gets me thinking how Ardbeg might taste after some aging in a really robust red cask. Perhaps that is the magic that could take a project like this from good to magical. I gave myself a small pour of Uigeadail just to compare, and the peat is definitely toned down here compared to the Uigeadail. I also don't really get the classic Ardbeg smoked meat here, but it is front and center in the Uigeadail. It's a black sheep and it works, for sure, but I feel like it sacrifices some of it's origin to strike an interesting, milder balance.
  3. DuaneG

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
    Smoke and blackberry jam on the palate. A sweeter Ardbeg on the nose. This is a treat to drink and there are a few layers to chew through. Get it without a second thought. On my second bottle.
  4. dstyles23

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
    Surprisingly gentle, especially for an Ardbeg
  5. ZacChastain

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
  6. awdedaws

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
    Thanks to my dad for a great/unique graduation bottle. This is a viscous whiskey with oily residue on the sides of my glass. A light golden straw color. Nose of sherry, grass, oak, pear and of course smoke. Though the smoke is evident it is quite soft and subtle for ardbeg. The smoke was hiding in the taste but dissipates and allows other flavors to emerge; leather, ripened plums, tannins. There is a slight medicinal/iodine quality that turns rapidly to Dr Pepper (or is it Root beer?) and finishes long. The leather, vanilla and tannins persist on the finish for a pleasant swirl. I love this whiskey with the disclaimer I am a big fan of islays finished in wine or port casks (lagavulin distillers edition, for example). I think the fruit stands up well to the smoke and leather typical for the style. Smoke critics will certainly knock this one for a lack of balance; I will gladly buy their share of bottles.
  7. John-Paul1

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
  8. Rosencrantz

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
    It is a bizarre smell that welcomes you, obsolete for an Ardbeg: the full-bodied and brackish peat is there, but tamed by a strong sweet component. Red fruits, green apple, caramel, vanilla and honey mix with acrid and medicinal smoke, alternating the nostrils in a curious dance of aromas. However, we are far from the calmness of An Oa, for example, the peat remains predominant, fiercely smoky and moist, but it declines in unusual sweet and fruity tones, dictated by the influence of the pinot. The palate reveals the strength of the whisky, with the alcohol content well present at the mouth, together with a very salty and peaty roar with a good peppery touch. But again, a sweet and cuddly profile hides under the muscles of burnt wood, bringing deep caramel notes, almost like sugared almonds, together with ripe fruit (many cherries, then raspberries and peach) and honey. Caribbean cigar tobacco background. It is a continuous alternation of the two souls, who overlap without ever amalgamating really, in an eternal conflict over who should prevail. In the end, the sweetness comes out defeated, rather long with pepper, smoked seaweed, sea salt and burnt wood. The balance is precarious, the two souls of the whisky never seem to reconcile, but it is precisely the conflict that makes drinking varied and fun, a variation on the Ardbeg theme that is delicious and curious, an imbalance that perhaps for some is a defect, for me it's a bonus.
  9. BurntEnds

    Tasted
    4.5
    4.5 out of 5 stars
    This Ardbeg expression is my all time favorite, of any I’ve yet had. It’s like Uigeadail turned up to 11, with the darker, jammy notes picked up from the Pinot Noir cask finishing as opposed to the lighter nuttiness of the Sherry. Absolutely outstanding. I wish that this was a regular release and at this higher proof, and I felt lucky to be able to find it and even get a few extra bottles. Blew my hootch budget for the month when I did. Cheers!
  10. whines12345

    Tasted
    4.0
    4.0 out of 5 stars
    150.0 USD per Bottle
  11. Results 1-10 of 32 Tastes

Trusted Partner Stores

  • The Epicurean Trader