Scotland is known for its famous whisky. The whisky produced on the island of Islay, located in the south of Scotland, is called Islay Malt and produces many famous whiskies. Ardbeg” is the most famous of them all, and has many enthusiastic fans in Japan as well.
In this article, we will explain the different types of Ardbeg, their flavors and recommended drinking styles. If you are a whiskey lover, you should definitely take a look at it.
What is Ardbeg?
Ardbeg is one of the leading brands of Islay Malt, a malt whisky made on the island of Islay in Scotland. Islay malt is characterized by its smokiness, but Ardbeg has a particularly strong smoky and peaty aroma.
Peat is a “peat” that is often used as fuel for heating. In the whisky making process, peat is used to burn the raw malt to dry.
The island of Islay is covered in a thick layer of peat, and Islay malt is notable for its heavy use of peat. Ardbeg is the brand with the largest amount of peat, and is loved by many fans for its strong personality.
Today, there are four varieties in the same series, each with its own flavor. Find your favorite flavor and enjoy Ardbeg.
History of Ardbeg
Ardbeg Distillery produces Ardbeg, a unique malt that is especially unique among Islay malts. The distillery was established in 1815. The distillery, located in the southern part of Islay, Scotland, was surrounded by mountains and seas and produced various types of Islay malts.
Although it is a small distillery, it has grown to be known all over the world for its unique whisky production and has grown to have a passionate fan base. However, due to the global whiskey depression in the 1980s, the distillery was forced to stop production from 1980 to 1989.
During the long shutdown period, the distillery was bought by Glenmorangie in 1997, after they regretted its technology and achievements. The distillery was purchased by Glenmorgenie in 1997, which made it possible for the distillery to be established in a stable manner, and it is still there today.
Ardbeg distillery was in dire straits many times. Now it has made a full recovery and produces a total of four different Ardbegs to meet the expectations of fans around the world.
A unique feature of Ardbeg’s process is that it uses “non-chill-filtered”. Chill-filtered is the term for “cold filtration”. Whiskey is usually chilled before bottling to remove the umami-containing sediment from the original whiskey and aged barrels. Ardbeg doesn’t have a cooling and filtration process, so you can enjoy the original flavor of the whiskey directly.
Another distinctive feature is the water used as a raw material. The water used for the preparation is from Lake Ugadar, which is located near the distillery. The water flows through the peat layer on Islay, which greatly influences Ardbeg’s characteristic smoky and peaty aroma.
Types of Ardbeg
Ardbeg 10 years
Of the four varieties in the lineup, the Ardbeg 10 Year Old is the first one to try. It has a strong smoky, peaty taste that is typical of Islay malt, with citrusy, fruity notes.
The balance of wildness and delicacy is well balanced, and in 2008 it was the first single malt whisky to win the World Whisky of the Year award. This is the type of whisky with the strongest character and the most distinctive Islay malt character.
Ardbeg An OA
This bottle is made up of three different types of original sake aged in bourbon, PX sherry, and new barrels that are slowly blended together over time. The taste is well rounded and angular, while retaining smokiness and peaty notes.
Lush, fruity aromas of peaches and bananas, and a smooth, creamy texture. It is the least distinctive of the series, so we recommend it to those who are trying it for the first time among the four types.
The bottle is named after the lake in which it is brewed, Lake Uigeadail. It is a blend of original sherry barrel-aged liquor, with the sweetness and spiciness that comes from sherry barrels.
The smokiness and sweetness work perfectly together, and in 2009, it won the “World Whisky of the Year” award. It has a sweetness with hints of chocolate and raisins and is soft on the palate.
This bottle is named after the Corryvreckan, the world’s second largest whirlpool near the island of Islay. In 2010, it was awarded “World’s Best Single Malt Whisky”.
It gives off strong smoke flavors and peaty notes that give a pungent first impression on the palate, much like a pepper steak. The key is a long, lingering finish with hints of black coffee and chocolate later on.
It is aged in new French oak barrels and has an alcohol content of 57.1%. Because of its very high alcohol content, this is the type of whisky recommended for advanced whisky drinkers.
Best Way to Drink Ardbeg
Ardbeg’s appeal is its strength of character. If you want to enjoy the characteristic smokiness and peaty aroma directly, then “straight” is the way to go. Also, “Twice Up,” which is made by dividing whiskey and water in equal amounts, opens up the aroma by adding water, which allows you to enjoy the aroma more than straight.
If you want to soften your personality or if you’re not a strong alcoholic, we recommend “highball” mixed with soda water in addition to water. If you want to take your time and enjoy it slowly, enjoy it on the rocks with ice.
Once you drink it, you’ll never forget the taste of Ardbeg. The first time you drink it, you’ll be shocked, but as you drink it, you’ll be strangely captivated by the brand. There are four different brands in the lineup, each with a different taste and personality. Pick up the type that suits your taste and have a fun whiskey time.