Ardbeg Blaaack

Overall rating
Whiskybase ID
Single Malt
Distillery Bottling
Bottling serie
Committee 20th Anniversary LIMITED EDITION
Pinot Noir from New Zealand
46.0 % Vol.
700 ml 700 ml 700 ml 750 ml
Bottle code
Bottled for
Ardbeg Day
Added on
06 May 2020 1:51 pm by Tauti

Average value

€ 333.98

98 × in wishlist

604 × member ratings

4172 × in collection

Whisky Reviews for Ardbeg Blaaack

81 users have left a review for this whisky and scored it an average of 87.34 points

  1. Kantenmechaniker scored this whisky 89 points Connoisseur

    Better for me than the March March Committee Release, which is rarely the case with, since I usually prefer to drink kegs rather than drinking strength. Convinced me completely now. Great Ardbeg!
    • Nose
      The nose comes across very fresh, maritime, slightly salty, decent smoke, sweet, dark chocolate, but not the very dark one, over time the chocolate gets lighter and it goes towards cocoa, a pinch of cinnamon, a very light note of glue, can also be a rather sour fruit, lime is above everything, the Ardbeg character is very clear, a few nuts appear, some pepper, raspberry, over time it becomes berry with a slightly effervescent sweetness, very nice nose
    • Taste
      wow, nice start, exciting, full of character, sweet kick at the tip of the tongue in combination with an intense citrus note, chocolate, light roasted aromas, spicy smoke, some salt that with the sweet aroma keeps a fight for the tip of the tongue, good drinking strength, not watered down
    • Finish
      intense roasted aromas on the back, lime, it becomes lighter, now the red berries are also coming through, ashy smoke fills the whole mouth and lasts a long time

  2. dominikbraun scored this whisky 89 points Expert Senior

    I am pleasantly surprised, very tasty.
    • Nose
      90 90
      Heavy, aromatic smoke, salt, maritime character, sea air, juicy peach, ripe citrus fruits, slightly bitter notes, milk chocolate, fruit tobacco and BBQ sauce.
    • Taste
      89 89
      Heavy and fruity straight away, then comes smoke, freshly ground pepper, peach, cherries, slightly dry fruit and charred wood.
    • Finish
      88 88
      Red fruits, espresso, again slightly maritime with campfire smoke.

  3. didi1893 scored this whisky 89 points Connoisseur

    A very successful bottling for me. The smoke note is not too extreme and intrusive, the peaty and maritime character comes into its own, the fruity grapes harmonize wonderfully with the acidic citrus aromas. Even if there is sometimes a lack of volume and "boom", the alcohol content of "only" 46% is the optimal drinking strength for me.
    Tastes and likes!

    22/23/22/22 (89P)

    These tasting notes and points awarded reflect my current personal impressions, are not representative and can fluctuate due to the daily form ...
    • Nose
      Creamy amber shines reddish in the glass, a thick and oily streak adheres to the glass wall of my Premium Snifter. Warm peat and gentle smoke stand out with sweet dried grapes and berries from the glass, caramel and sweet apricots beguile the nose, extremely thick "legs" on the glass wall visually complement the great first impression. Chocolate and cocoa powder follow, salty notes appear, salty fruity sweetness and smoky peat blend into a wonderful blend. Roasted hazelnuts and walnuts, a hint of tart citrus, the nose makes you hungry for the first sip!
    • Taste
      Fruity peat flows gently over the tongue with a cold smoke note, burnt wood tones are reminiscent of campfires, ashes and embers, caramel and sweet grapes combine with grapefruit and zest from lemon peel, a pinch of white pepper gently massages the tongue. The pleasant sharpness slowly spreads throughout the mouth and lines the palate with cozy warmth. Fly ash, burnt wood, cold smoke in combination with peat fire end after a few moments in fruity sweetness, the fruity sweetness changes into sour citrus fruits from which sea salt and a stiff sea surprise dissolve ...
    • Finish
      Creamy and subtly smoky sticky peat and fading fruit aromas on the palate, caramel and toffee end in hazelnuts, salt and pepper still rest on the tongue in the form of pleasant sharpness. The citrus fruits slowly fade, the hazelnut aroma becomes more intense, old walnuts are added. In the background there are tart and smoky wood tones, an ember nest disappears, fly ash is minimally distributed in the mouth while the fruity peat is warming through the palate and throat ...

  4. dRambo scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    interesting that it can be so sweet without getting sticky in the finish or appear syrupy - a light sweet biscuit fruity malt with subtle smoke for an Ardbeg. designed to be mass-compatible - would be worth the price of a laphi lore ~ 60 € until recently - but I'm not a fan boi either - price not rated!
    • Nose
      88 88
      the first nose still looks out of round - fruit and smoke are separated - with more air it gets better - combines.
      very dense, sweet, the wine barrel notes dance fruity on the nose - very lively but also very, very sweet
    • Taste
      88 88
      primarily sweet and yellow-fruity, then more seasoning, pepper and mint - warm and cold at the same time - only then does the smoke slowly appear more clearly
      very nice texture and excellently integrated alcohol - the 46% fit him perfectly - more would probably make him stand out easily
    • Finish
      86 86
      it does not want to be drunk in too small sips - if you chew it well and it is not miserly the finish is nice - with nerd sips it looks rather thin - you have to drink correctly
      there is a lot of liquorice in the finish for me

  5. Archer scored this whisky 88 points Connoisseur

    In contrast to the previous year, Ardbeg finally delivers clean work with both the Committee and the Limited / General version of the Blaaack. I particularly like the way the distillery character is played here, this shifting between berry fruits from the wine barrels and lemony Ardbeg ashtray. The influence of the wine barrel is not too dominant, rather the wine barrels provide a flavor complement without flattening the other character.
    • Nose
      88 88
      The aromas from the Pinot Noir barrels immediately push forward and manifest themselves as blackberries, blueberries, black currants and black cherries. Pleasant, warm peat smoke that easily plays around the fruit. Leather and tobacco notes. Pepper, grated nutmeg, cinnamon and coriander. Nougat en bloc, soft toffee.
    • Taste
      88 88
      Creamy and fruity appearance, in which the warm peat smoke immediately gives way to the lemony Ardbeg ashtray. Blackberries, blueberries and black cherries from the nose can be found on the tongue, but lemon and lime slices give a swirl in the tropical fruit corner, so that later also pineapple and kiwi (not really, or. Pinot Noir barrels from New Zealand and now Kiwi fruits: too obvious, my brain will surely play a trick). Becomes increasingly dry and goes entirely on the side of citrus fruits. In addition, cold, stale smoke, dry wood, a little liquorice, spices of slightly bitter herbs and pepper.
    • Finish
      87 87
      Medium length, dry, ashy, some menthol. Grated lemon peel, full of ashtray, coffee powder, pepper, paprika spice, some curry powder, dark chocolate.

  6. markjedi1 scored this whisky 88 points Connoisseur

    **Black Sheep**

    For Ardbeg Day 2020 the Islay distillery launched a sheep theme. Ardbeg claims to be very different from all other distilleries on the island and therefor calls itself the black sheep. Well, well, the boys and girls of the marketing department really earn their keep. Still, it is a very interesting release, as the malt got a finish on Pinot Noir wine casks from New Zealand. Next to this limited edition Ardbeg also released a Committee Only bottling with cream colored label and at cask strength. We’ll try that one as well, but let’s start with the 46% release for us mere mortals.

    Ooh, this nose is pleasant! At first I get the typical peat, smoldering wood, ashes and even Wellington boots – all typical for Ardbeg – but also some nice umami and dark & sweet notes. Think marinated ribs on the BBQ, blackcurrants, nougat with hazelnuts, paprika powder, coriander and a bit of caramel. This is a very good nose.

    It is surprisingly creamy upon arrival. It bursts with fruit, ashes and pepper. It immediately sets the mouth aflame. The smoke becomes big, the berries dark and then suddenly citrus fruits kick in and the malt evolves towards the liquid ashtray I have so come to love. The dark and sweet notes of the wine remain present, but clearly plays second fiddle now.

    The finish is long and chockful of ashes, then turns very dry. A bitterness appears at the death.

    I’m not fond of Ardbeg’s marketing strategy and therefor sometimes try to find flaws in the product. I know, silly and narrow minded. And wrong. Honestly, this Ardbeg is absolutely delightful.

  7. Jackson05 scored this whisky 84 points Connoisseur


    Year after year Ardbeg turns out a NAS (marketing driven) committee release to pretty enthusiastic fanfare. Next year should be virgin oak no doubt. I always wonder why could they not release a 10 year cask strength committee release? People would go crazy. Probably because they simply don’t need to, but also because it would set a age statement precedent they want no part of. I digress...

    There is not very much wine influence here, or at least not near what you’d think. That’s not a bad thing mind you, but no one can convince me either that this is that good. It’s fine, but passionless whisky. Laphroaig 10 cask strength or Lagavulin 12 smash this whisky.

  8. wisekycourse scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    nose on the smoke, a maritime side, a little soot, citrus fruits, a cocoa and barbecue return, the juices roasted on the cast iron!
    Fruity mouth, then smoke more than peat, even direct ash, peppery spices, strawberry, if and yet I haven't eaten before !, and the burnt wood which gives off smoke ; more fruit later on juicy cooked peach.
    Final on red fruits, smell of dirty port at low tide and the black smoke in the distance which comes in a pack of small clouds.
    • Finish
      the interesting side is not to have any peat, and to perceive a gripping cold ash.
      The fruits bring this fleeting sensation of strawberry (more about crunching inside and perceiving this concentrated juice, I ask myself the question of strawberry or wild strawberries ??)
      slightly bitter cocoa and dry wood shavings too!
      criticized, this 2020 vintage changes from the omnipresent peat.

  9. Tingrus scored this whisky 85 points Member Senior

    Available at shop.ardbeg.com for £94 5.27.2020

  10. nallacam scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    Well, it has been running through like a red thread for several annual releases. The nose is really impressive and complex, imk mouth is then only the back burner. This is how I feel with most Ardbegs and so no bottle will still adorn my shelf.
    • Nose
      90 90
      Sweet smoke, also a note of wine, green unripe nuts, bacon, IPA, hops, green tea, olives, white smoke, cloves, allspice, pepper, a touch of cherry from Pinot Noir, honey, cold fireplace
    • Taste
      86 86
      Very herbaceous, chatreuse, dry peat, again tea, slightly bitter, somewhat watery, mouth-filling cold smoke, the sweetness is gone, the edgy notes take over
    • Finish
      85 85
      Dry, medium length, green tannins


Add tasting tags by clicking the flavours you recognized in this whisky.


Whiskybase is founded in 2007 with the goal to create the biggest resource of whisky information in the world. A community driven website built by and for whisky enthusiasts.  

Whiskybase B.V. 
Zwaanshals 530 
3035 KS Rotterdam 
The Netherlands 

KVK: 52072819
VAT: NL850288836B01

Copyright © 2021

Forgot your password?