Bruichladdich tasting with David Keir from the distillery

This week I attended a tasted of 7 expressions from Bruichladdich. The tasting was organised by DH17slijteren but was hosted by David Keir. Naturally the tasting was in English with a nice Scottish accent. It was my first tasting (and it will not be my last) and it was fun. The whisky line-up was very balanced, before the break we had 4 non peated (although still at 3ppm) and after a break the peat shows up (ranging from 10 to 40ppm). I did not finish (most of) my drams entirely, just to be able to attend the sooner ones for a revisit for comparison. The tasting notes are short due to the sole fact that listening to David, tasting, discuss the drams and writing it down, didn’t go well sometimes (I’m still figuring out what I did write down sometimes). The glasses used where small Glencairn’s. So what was de line-up?

Bruichladdich Rocks (3ppm)

Entrance level of the Bruichladdich range. Nice nose, definitively bourbon influence but also some light winy notes appear. David told us that this one is finished for some months on wine casks, no predefined period though. The vanilla is the most distinct smell. The taste is somewhat sweet, with tannins and some spiciness (ginger like). Finish a little bit bitter. Dying down during the night in just plain vanilla. Nice starter and a good dram regarding the price from ca 27 euro’s. Will do fine as a daily dram.

Bruichladdich Sherry Classic (3ppm)

Well this one has a nose which screams out Sherry. It is quite rich and somewhat sweet with someMiddle Eastfruitiness.  The taste is powerful dried raisins with some sweetness and tartness of an orange. The palate/finish is long and drying with a distinct amount of tannins and wood. This one did not die out during the night, every time I revisited my glass, the Sherry (although getting more and more sulphur during the night out of this one) shouts out even after a revisit from the higher peated ones. For me the sherry influence is somewhat unbalanced in this dram, not a bad dram but not very good.

Bruichladdich Links Birkdale (3ppm)

This one surprised me. The nose is full flavoured with very beautiful maritime notes with vanilla. The taste again the saltiness and coastal flavours arrives accompanied by honeyed sweetness and some very light caramel. The finish is quite long and refreshing (just imagine yourself walking along the beachside at early morning in spring and you get de overall feeling of the dram). Very enjoyable. This one I took home a bottle so there will be posted a more detailed tasting note in the future.

Bruichladdich Cuvee E Sauternes Finish (Chateau D’Yquem) (3ppm)

With this one I have some problems, I wrote something down, but I am not able to figure out what I wrote down. Some key points which I can read: Sweet, but quite balanced, some light saltiness, not a very dry finish but again the sweetness, some light tannins. Nice wine finished dram, but not one I would buy for my taste.

Bruichladdich Resurrection Dram 2001 (10ppm)

Quite a powerful nose of peat for a 10ppm, some iodine with freshness of some mint also. In the back some tones of hay. Light fruit tones and some sweetness also. Great nose. Palate again more powerful tones of the smokiness and peat then you would expect form a 10ppm. Some light coastal saltiness appears with some nice spicy tones of ginger or white pepper. Finish is long and the smoke and peat keep returning. Surprisingly powerful distinctIslaydram. Very good balanced and simply a very good whisky.

Bruichladdich Infinity 3 (25 ppm, bourbon/sherry casks)

This has a higher peat level then the Resurrection but it doesn’t show on the nose, the sherry influence is big and somehow there is a fight between the peat/smokiness and the sherry. Not unpleasant, but complex. The taste is much more balanced between the wine/sherry influence and the peat/smokiness kicks in, but the combination of the peat and the sherry makes this a complex dram and the time during this tasting was too short to figure it complete out. Put this one on the wish list (but that list is growing almost every day).

Bruichladdich Port Charlotte PC8 (40ppm)

Wow, this is the kind of nose you would expect form anIslay, Beautiful Islay tones of peat, the smokiness, pineapple and some coastal aroma’s to balance it out. Taste is full powered long and rich again with the tones of the peat and the smokiness. The finish is extremely long (I could recall this dram the following morning from memory) I’ll keep the note short, while I took a bottle home with me for a more detailed tasting note in the future.

Conclusion

Overall it was a great and balanced tasting within the large range of Bruichladdich expressions. The latest news, I heard while talking to David afterwards was that Bruichladdich will put a PC9 in the market in a limited edition (approx thousand cases). The first intent was to bring out a PC10 instead of a PC9, but it was requested by the customers. The request from the customers resulted in buying back casks to be able to release a PC9. They also will rearrange the range of expressions (for example the Bruichladdich Peat will be discontinued). David and DH17 thanks for a very enjoyable night of dramming!

About gjr71

Whisky enthousiast, working for a auditing firm. Loves Whisky, Wine, Music and a good meal.
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3 Responses to Bruichladdich tasting with David Keir from the distillery

  1. JayDieNL says:

    A little while ago I was searching for a peaty, sherried dram. Finally I bought two:
    * Bowmore 2000 7yo – Murray McDavid
    * Bruichladdich Sherry Classic

    In your tasting note I don’t see or read the word “Peat” once?! :-O I haven’t tasted that Bruichladdich yet. Can you explain and /or clarify? Not a trace of peat / smoke?

    • gjr71 says:

      I am terrible sorry, but I did not find a single trace of peat/smoke in the Sherry Classic (in this tasting situation). Due to the 3ppm peat level it could be somewhere in it but then it was probably playing a game of hide and seek.
      The Infinity is also a Sherry/peated dram, but even with that higher amount op ppm, the peat has trouble to overpower the sherry, the peat needs time to kick in, but the sherry influence keeps fighting back, resulting in complex and somewhat fighting flavours.

      I think the Sherry Classic has a ppm level which is far to low to win it form the sherrypower also when letting the dram breath for a longer time the sulphur will be on the winning hand!

      I’m curious if you will find any peat/smoke in this dram so please let me know!

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