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Ledaig 1997/2013 Gordon & Macphail, ‘La Maison Du Whisky’, cask 461

Ledaig, that’s really peated Tobermory of course. From the Isle of Mull. Though blind tasted, it may well be mistaken for a whisky on the south coast of an island further to the south.

Fun fact about Tobermory (the burgh of the Isle of Mull, from which the distillery is now named) – It’s famous in the UK for its colouful houses which are the backdrop for a children’s tv show called Balamory.

Rather nice isn’t it.

Tobermory distillery:

Where does the source of Ledaig’s peat come from? ‘Dark and aromatic lochan water’ says the blurb, but the water is used for both Tobermory and Ledaig, and the water is filtered through sand, reducing it’s contribution to final peatiness.

The malt? We know Tobermory does not have a malting, and for a while it received peated malt from Port Ellen though it’s traditional source is from the mainland. Though this website claims that peated malt is always from Port Ellen.

Another fun fact: Tobermory spirit stills are known for having a kinked Lyne arm:

Lediag 1997/2013 Gordon & Macphail, for ‘La Maison Du Whisky’, cask 461, 46%

IMG_2245

Nose  Nose: Whoa. That’s thick peat oil. Heavy and wet kind of peat, with a vegetal mugginess like old wet straw. Muddy field after an afternoon’s downpour. A little odd as I half expect the coastal notes to blow in next but they’re conspicuously missing here. But it’s menthol and sappy like broken plant stems and lots of vanilla creme instead.

Taste  Palette: Its huge as expected. Big peaty whooshh and on the sweetish side, engine oil, menthol and that crushed leaf note. Medium viscosity. A stack of rubber tires unburnt. Not hugely smoky but rather more like a coal fire doused. Somewhat salty now, but much less salty than a Talisker would be. Then white pepper.

Finish  Finish: Medium, peat tang and..  something bruléd.

Score60

It’s got all the phenolic elements in place, and taken to the appropriate extreme. Full marks for bluster, but loses points for overall complexity – it wasn’t very coastal, or didn’t hide a sweet/spicy side I was hoping to be surprised by. Might mix a little sherry monster in just to see how they team up.

Still! Very fine for  peaty complexity – why does this remind me of that excellent PE5?

 

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~E D I T~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

My God, what a difference some air in the bottle makes. The above notes were for a well aerated first pour and coming back to it now with some air in the bottle, I am blown away by the difference some oxygen makes. So. Oxygen is not always bad, and here I am dutifully filling open bottles with this:

Tank of Argon gas, cheaper in a 10L tank form than in the private preserve form but oh well… back to the Ledaig

That heavy peat oil and earthy dirtiness is still there, but the coastal notes are really rising out now. Not a storm lashed store, smells more like seaweed in still rock pools, skittering crabs and barnacles lobster cages. followed by some farmyard doo doo, then smoke and oat biscuits. Palette now shows much more salt notes now, rock salt, wet sand. Punchy peat, some zest and that mentholated leafy note, ah. Marlboro Menthol. Rubber tyres and embers.

In light of this I must revise my scale:

Score 80

 

Bravo! Another lesson to myself, even when I think I’ve given a whisky enough air.

 

 

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4 comments on “Ledaig 1997/2013 Gordon & Macphail, ‘La Maison Du Whisky’, cask 461

  1. Pingback: Tobermory | whiskyrific

  2. Everyday Asia
    February 12, 2015

    I’ve sampled cask no 462 – delightful! And found, like you, it improves with even more airing.

  3. Pingback: Ledaig 1997 46% | Whisky Lady

  4. Pingback: Ledaig 1997 46% | BARTEND.IN

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This entry was posted on February 27, 2014 by in Ledaig and tagged , .
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