Origin: Isle of Islay (Scotland)
Type: Single Malt Scotch Whisky
Ageing barrels: Ex-Bourbon and ex-Cognac
Added coloring: No
Owner: Fox Fitzgerald
Average price: € 260.00
Official website: peatsbeast.com
I’m back to find the peaty beast, this time in a limited (1,800 bottles) and very special version.
It’s in fact an age-declared edition, with a significant amount of ageing, of which at least the region of origin is known, i.e. the very smoky Islay, unlike the previous bottlings of which all that is known is that they contain Scotch whisky (and probably not from Islay).
In their portfolio there is already another bottling that is not a NAS, a 25 year old, again from Islay and again full strength.
In fact, here too we have a cask strength bottle (with the strength reduced by extended ageing), containing a 1985 spirit that, at some unspecified time within the 34 years of ageing, was finished in casks that contained Cognac.
Needless to say, I expect a lot from this drink, and I can only thank the very kind Aidan Smith of Fox Fitzgerald and Remko van der Weijden of Anker Amsterdam Spirits for the generous sample.
Mahogany in the glass.
The nose is sinuous and full, of panna cotta, dates and dried figs with almonds, honey crunch, cooked pears, melted butter, all spread on a slice of lacquered wood. White chocolate with pistachios. The smoke is a background impression, ethereal but present, gliding over the aromas and punctuating them, like a lit fireplace not far away. Very opulent and decadent.
The bohemian elegance continues on the palate, with an oily and compact liquid that penetrates in a persuasive mixture of sweet and salty, like the mellifluous words of a seducer who wants to steal your soul (or at least your liver), letting salted caramel, Sicilian buccellati (shortbread biscuits filled with figs, walnuts, cocoa and honey), marzipan, liquorice and a hint of ginger slip through your senses… compact and full, it doesn’t give way at every sip, maintaining a complex and multiform structure.
And after being seduced, what remains is a fistful of ash, with the lasting memory of figs, caramel, toasted wood and salt on the lips…
A full, rich, complex whisky that slowly involves you in an almost meditative drink, bringing to mind damask robes and sticks with wrought-steel knobs: the beast has abandoned all strident pretensions and reveals its most intimate and languid soul, where smoke becomes the frame of a moving picture.