I dare call Ledaig an Islay malt. Not because of its grand taste, not because I believe that other peated whiskies are just Islay-style (if such a thing even exists) rip-offs. No because the only thing that separates this one from other Islay malts is the fact that it is distilled on the Isle of Mull at the Tobermory (or was it Ledaig?) distillery. It starts its journey at the Port Ellen Maltings and spends most of her childhood not far from where her journey started, next to her cousins in the warehouses of the Bunnahabhain distillery.
If someone wonders where that iodine taste might come from, this malt traveled from Port Ellen to Tobermory, than up to Deanston, back to Islay to Bunnahabhain before being send to the bottling plant, crossing the Scottish sounds at least four times before ending her journey inside a bottle. Quite the traveler this young lady! But how does she hold up?
Nose: Dominant peat scents but only mild smoke and less clean than her Islay cousins, iodine, lemon, whiffs of cigarette tobacco and not as predominantly as with her non-peated brother: that smell of fermenting rice.
(water added: Apples? what a pleasant surprise, a much more fruity seaside breeze and more scents of rice sake breaking through)
Mouth: Oilier than I expected: notes of vanilla, slightly medicinal peat, white pepper
Finish: Quite a dry bitter finish with a short salty burn, spicy: notes of white pepper.
Be careful when you add water, the palate can easily be diluted.
|I imagine the Ledaig could easily be mistaken for the lovechild of a Coal Ila 12yo and a Tobermory 10yo.
I like the nose, but the rest is a bit too simple for my taste, but then again, this malt comes at a great price, so final verdict: not really a must-have, but well worth a try. I would choose it over its non-peated brother anytime.