A bit late, but better late than never, is my write-up on the Ardbeg day tasting held by WhiskyBrother. This was an event that sold out very quickly, especially once one read which Ardbeg whiskies we would be tasting, as it would be a vertical tasting of six Ardbegs’. The venue for the gathering of us Ardbeggians for this auspicious event was the Pimento bistro in Illovo.
Welcoming us to the event was Marc Pendlebury, the “Chief Ardbeggian Officer” for the evening, who was looking very spiffy in his Ardbog day t-shirt. You were greeted with an Ardbeg 10YO as a welcome drink and as you wound your way to a seat, you were greeted to the sight of a chained up Ardbeg 10YO, the whiskies for the tasting and all the empty glasses lined up and waiting to receive the ‘water of life’.
The whiskies in our tasting line up were:
- Blasda – 40% ABV
- Still Young – 56.2% ABV
- Almost There – 54.1% ABV
- Galileo – 49% ABV
- Corryvreckan – 57.1% ABV
- Supernova 2010 – 60.1% ABV
But first they had to be poured into the eagerly waiting glasses. This sacred duty fell to Chief Ardbeggian Officer Marc to fulfil and to ensure that each Ardbeggian got their fair share.
Once all poured and distributed the tasting began, with Marc leading the tasting and sharing with us anecdotes, stories and the history of Ardbeg. Soon the room was filled with the usual murmurs and mutterings of a tasting, which naturally steadily increased in volume as each dram was tasted and savoured.
Once all whiskies were tasted, relished, discussed and appreciated some more it was time for us to reveal which ones we enjoyed the most and which particular one was our favourite (for the evening at least). This was an almost impossible task for me as I thought they were all good and that each one had its own set of characteristics and peculiarities that made them interesting and delicious.
Anyway, after much deliberation I felt that my top Ardbeg, from the line up for that evening, was the Corryvreckan. It was very closely (extremely closely actually) followed by the Supernova 2010, and then by the Almost There and the Galileo.
This really was an excellent evening with special tasting that I believe to be a once in a lifetime opportunity for most of us (it certainly was for me). A huge thank you to Marc of WhiskyBrother for arranging and putting together such a wonderful and extraordinary tasting of Ardbeg.
So here’s to Ardbeg Day 2014 in South Africa. May it be even bigger, better and bolder!