Islay whiskies are known for their peatiness, although not all the distilleries on the island produce this style - Bruichladdich and Bunnahabhain have little or no peat in their standard expressions and Caol Ila produce an unpeated batch every year, while even the famously smoky Ardbeg has an unpeated expression, Blasda. Read More »
The 2001 bottling for The Ardbeg Committee, Ardbeg's fan club. This one is part of a limited release matured for at least 21 years at the distillery, the youngest spirit being distilled just before its early 80s closure.
A rare commemorative bottling of Bowmore released to commemorate the 2003 fly fishing championships on Islay. Only a small number of bottles, with their wooden display case, were produced and this is sought after by collectors.
The eighth release sold out in a few days and the first edition now commands about a grand if you can find it, so this is a bargain. Classic PE kippers 'n' slippers character, with plenty of grunt from the high alcohol.
An epic Ardbeg, this is one of Douglas Laing's earlier Platinum series releases from 2004. Some old Ardbegs are sweet and fruity, but here the emphasis is very much on the smoke with the fruit and sweetness in the background. A belter.
A legendary Ardbeg, Kildalton was a one-off bottling (1300 bottles released in 2004) of some experimental unpeated and lightly peated whiskies made at the distillery in 1980. It is known that these experiments ran from 1979-81, but while a 1981 Kildalton mini appeared in the Ardbeg Peat Pack a few years ago the 1979 vintage has yet to see the light of day. Fingers crossed they haven't lost it or used it in any of their other bottlings.
At 25 years old this whisky embodies the richness, depth and sweetness of all Ardbegs. Light gold in colour and powerful in character. A phenomenal, much-sought-after bottling of a really outstanding malt.
A 35 year old Bowmore, distilled in 1968 and bottled as part of the Celtic Heartlands range. With Jim McEwan behind the selection you're fairly safe that each bottle in the series is going to be quite special.
The second sensational OB Port Ellen 1978, bottled around the turn of the millennium as part of the Rare Malts series. This phenomenal dram was rated at 93 points by Serge Valentin of Whiskyfun, and its popularity and acclaim led to the revivial of interest in this classic closed distillery and thus to the birth of the annual Special Releases series.