Ardbeg Scorch

Overall rating
86.58/100
votes
529
Whiskybase ID
WB182094
Category
Single Malt
Distillery
Bottler
Distillery Bottling
Bottling serie
Limited Edition
Bottled
16.02.2021
Casktype
Dragon Charred Casks
Strength
46.0 % Vol.
Size
700 ml 700 ml 750 ml
Bottle code
L2408932
Barcode
5010494969719
Bottled for
Feis Ile 2021, was sold "only" with Ardbeg bag in various countries
Added on
23 apr 2021 7:10 am by maurizio
UncoloredNon-chillfiltered

Average value

€ 258.52

82 × in wishlist

529 × member ratings

3975 × in collection

Whisky reviews for Ardbeg Scorch

75 users have left 76 reviews for this whisky. Average rating is 86.58 points.

  1. Official tasting note

    Press release, Ardbeg / Moet Hennessy
    General Release (GR), 46%, 115.- EUR - from May 25th, 2021
    no chill filtration (no cold filtration)
    no color added (without added caramel)
    Color: light brushed gold
    • Nose
      Scary, intense aromas of soot and smoke. Hints of aniseed and fragrant patchouli are intertwined with strong notes of hardened steel and saddle soap. With a drop of water, herbal top notes of briar, sage and pine come to the fore.
    • Taste
      With one sip, an abundance of aromas opens up. Oily, meaningful with a cloud of sweet smoke and kite-charred oak. Grilled food is interwoven with notes of black liquorice and medicinal lozenges.
    • Finish
      A long and heroic finale, with a light, tarry aftertaste that stretches happily and far to the end.

  2. Ben Bruikman scored this whisky 92 points Expert Junior

    is a gold colored whisky from the Islay region of Scotland. The whisky has matured in ex-bourbon American oak barrels.
    • Nose
      90 90
      the scent is intense with notes of soot and smoke followed by a touch of aniseed
    • Taste
      92 92
      You taste a taste of sweet smoke and charred oak.
    • Finish
      94 94
      The finish is long with subtle notes of leather

  3. aquataste scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      Sweet with a little dryness, buttery peat smoke, a little soapy, vanilla, heather honey, toffee, caramel, green apples, tangerines, freshly cut wood, milk chocolate, a breeze of forest and resin, a handful of dried herbs, charred wood in the background
    • Taste
      Peat smoke with ash and a pinch of pepper, lemon peel, ripe mandarin, butter, vanilla, toffee, a little iodine, milk chocolate, a handful of nuts, a pinch of fresh herbs and sea salt
    • Finish
      Long, peat smoke and ash, lemon peel, nut, pinch of pepper and herbs

  4. SimondeVette scored this whisky 76 points Expert Senior

    I liked this just fine
    • Nose
      Vanilla, coconut, peat, pear, strawberry
    • Taste
      Oak, vanilla, coconut, strawberry, cookie, toast
    • Finish
      Almond, coconut, oak, vanilla, fruity, peat, cookie

  5. SYMUE1 scored this whisky 95 points Member Senior

    .

  6. Jamie McDubh scored this whisky 84 points Expert Senior

    You can drink the Ardbeg Scorch well, but nothing more. I loved the alligator and was hoping for something similar with the scorch with the burnt out barrels. Unfortunately, he didn't leave a lasting impression. Ardbeg has produced better ones.
    • Nose
      84 84
      smoky - lemony - caramel
    • Taste
      84 84
      Peat smoke - caramel - slight bitterness - ash
    • Finish
      85 85
      Long - peat smoke

  7. Sirralf scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      86 86
      Coffee and herbal notes, peat smoke, molasses
    • Taste
      87 87
      Spicy and powerful at first, lots of peat smoke, some cocoa and dark chocolate, caramel, some citrus and aniseed
    • Finish
      87 87
      Long lasting finish with sweetness, toffee and strong smoke

  8. mr_braun scored this whisky 88 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      89 89
    • Taste
      88 88
    • Finish
      87 87

  9. Igor_Gudimov scored this whisky 88 points Expert Senior

    Sweet, complex, oily Ardbeg
    • Nose
      88 88
      Sweet, ash, oily smoke, anise, pear, creamy, lemon zest, green floral notes, charcoal, cooked fruits, caramel, roasted nuts
    • Taste
      88 88
      Caramel sweetness, nutty, cinnamon, ash, anise, lemon, fresh wood, bonfire smoke, coconut (can be optional)
    • Finish
      87 87
      Long, sweet, creamy smoke, ash, spicy white pepper, herbs, oily

  10. VEF206 scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      87 87
    • Taste
      86 86
    • Finish
      85 85

  11. Mankut scored this whisky 90 points Expert Senior

    Once again, I have an alligator in the glass, which could indicate that the scorch came from the latter of the gutted alligator bottling barrels. It was tasty but against alligator only to warm it up.

  12. Squinugie scored this whisky 86 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      87 87
    • Taste
      86 86
    • Finish
      86 86

  13. Whisky-Fancier scored this whisky 85 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      86 86
    • Taste
      85 85
    • Finish
      83 83

  14. Arrrrrdbeg scored this whisky 87 points Expert Junior

    A very good whisky but the Committee Edition is a lot better due to the higher alcohol content and you can taste more aromas.
    • Nose
      88 88
      Typical Ardbeg aromas, ashy, aniseed, citrus notes, campfire, sweet
    • Taste
      88 88
      Sweet, Ashy, Aniseed, Lemon, Burnt Wood, Great smoky notes and absolutely not overpowering.
    • Finish
      86 86
      Rather shorter, slightly oily, sweet, aniseed and spices dominate, smoke disappears a bit too quickly for me

  15. Kantenmechaniker scored this whisky 86 points Connoisseur

    Totally tasty, very mild and sweet, could have a few percent more, but that's what the Committee version is for
    • Nose
      Sweet light fruity Ardbeg, vanilla, greasy smoke, pastry dough with cinnamon, pear, creamy, has something of a grilled dessert, the pear is very intense, beautifully juicy and sweet, hazelnut, some grated lemon zest, quite pleasant overall after the first Sip much smokier, spicier, more intense, and still massive pear
    • Taste
      Oily, sweet, intense smoke, campfire, cinnamon, pear, slightly nutty, super sweet, I have to think of pastries again, creamy, lovely, you can tell it's only 46%, slightly watery after the start
    • Finish
      Fruity, nutty, sweet, smoke lingers on the palate, pleasantly ending, but unspectacular, now also slightly floral

  16. hogsheadwhisky scored this whisky 88 points Expert Senior

    A thoroughly successful limited bottling by Ardbeg. Especially on the nose, in addition to the distinctive wood smoke, it has very nice fruity notes. The lemon note that has been typical for me to date is not present. In the taste, the smoke and the ash then take over all the more strongly and it becomes tart and spicy. Delicious. The 46% alcohol content suits him well. He is very drinkable, dangerously drinkable.
    • Nose
      89 89
      Oh yeah! Ardbeg as I like it. A lot of smoke aroma immediately floats into the nose from the Premium Snifter. Very aromatic. Wood smoke from a campfire on which some herbs are burned and skewers with pineapple and peach pieces are grilled, from which drops of fruit juice keep dripping onto the glowing pieces of charcoal. When these sweet, fruity clouds of smoke blow away, you discover the hint of a delicate floral note that I don't know from Ardbeg at all. Behind it it gets spicier again with damp branches of conifers, on which small crumbs of resin are still stuck, which fall into the fire. A slight note of menthol is present, but in no way disturbing or attributable to the alcohol, but rather accentuating the other smells.
    • Taste
      88 88
      Very creamy, a soft mouthfeel. A slight sweetness on the tongue for the first time, which is quickly blown away from the nose by the heavy wood smoke and the logs of the campfire that have now been burned down to ashes. Then it becomes slightly spicy with delicate red pepper or ginger and lots of herbs such as sage and rosemary. There is little to taste of the fruit from the nose. It is primarily at home in the bitter taste spectrum. With the second sip, the spiciness becomes even more dominant, but both the sweet aromas with vanilla extract develop longer at first and a light fruit such as lemon zest with a few drops of lemon juice becomes apparent.
    • Finish
      87 87
      The ash and smoke initially dominate the finish. Then liquorice and again the herbs and spices become the main aroma. Some dark chocolate, a slight bitter note is present but more in the background. The finish is quite long, mainly due to the smoke.

  17. zzqfyl scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      86 86

  18. lucero scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      87 87

  19. Svjatogor scored this whisky 82 points Expert Senior

    n: smoke, peat, pleasant, ash, bonfire, earthy, steel, herbal, fruity, beetroot, charred wood, caramel, biscuits, licorice
    t: typical ardbeg 10yo + bonfire, smoke, sweet, tarr
    a: tarr, smoke, ash, bonfire, licorice, bitter

  20. Petitcham scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    Subcompatibility in the Committee version

  21. teurodevil scored this whisky 81 points Member Senior

    • Nose
      83 83
    • Taste
      80 80
    • Finish
      80 80

  22. dongolzo81 scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    Yes, he has ash and smoke. It's also an Ardbeg. In contrast to many opinions here, I do not feel these aromas to be above average for this distillery. I find the fruity sweetness unusual, but very pleasant. Already on the nose, the classic citrus and less typical peach aromas form a nice contrast to the smoke. It becomes even sweeter in the mouth, the nose is even more flowery with the palate full of aromas. Then a bit of dryness and more "Islay" at the back. A bit of raspberry pepper. Really successful.
    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      88 88
    • Finish
      84 84

  23. F_Weinberg scored this whisky 86 points Member Senior

    Tried a dram in a local whisky bar. (Which I have to say is a good way to sample some of these outrageously priced limited edition Ardbegs) Overall a tasty whisky with typical peat notes that lacks some depth to push it into that "excellent" column.
    • Nose
      88 88
      A fine balance of peat, (Intensely smoky, BBQ ribs, Bacon Frazzles, chimney soot) sweetness (chocolate biscuit, toffee & caramel, liquorice) and herbs (mint). Very pleasant.
    • Taste
      86 86
      Dominated by peat, with smoke from an open fireplace and cured fish (mackerel & kippers) being the predominant flavours. There's also a chilli pepper note in there somewhere.
    • Finish
      85 85
      Fairly straightforward with sooty peat and peppery oak. Short/medium in length, with a slightly bitter herb note towards the end.

  24. Astrid scored this whisky 85 points Connoisseur

    The dragon made a good impression. In some cases, however, not much grows there. Rather one to smell, not to drink. For the full review, go here: https://halbendrinks.de/2022/02/06/ardbeg-feis-ile/
    • Nose
      86 86
    • Taste
      84 84
    • Finish
      84 84

  25. Daniel Hohleweg scored this whisky 85 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      86 86
    • Taste
      84 84
    • Finish
      84 84

  26. Tangtang_WhiskyYoda scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    rather closed on the nose but on the palate and in the finish the aromas are more varied, although unfortunately a bit too short in the finish.
    • Nose
      87 87
      rather restrained, smoke only comes through very subtly, a few citrus fruits and light fruits, sweet.
      After a while in the air, the intensity of the smoke increases a bit, but still looks restrained.
    • Taste
      88 88
      Very nice start, creamy, sweet and fruity with peat smoke, chocolate comes, honey, vanilla, light citrus fruits, and very light pepper. The overall impression is very soft and creamy, accompanied by the peat smoke. Very salivary.
    • Finish
      87 87
      here again the peat smoke, chocolate, honey, light citrus fruits, and the sweet fruits.
      Unfortunately, the flavors subside quickly and it shows up rather short to medium-long

  27. 3_243F6 scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      Really pleasant actually. Lots of Ardbeg peat but those “dragon charred” casks have softened it a little. Some vanilla and spice are present too. That being said, it isn’t very complex at all.
    • Taste
      A bit watery? Honey, apple, vanilla, spice, sweet Ardbeg peat.
    • Finish
      The peat is back in full force, bringing along with it some apple, vanilla, spice, and honey. Becomes a bit flat quickly.

  28. SAND scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    (TASTED BLIND)
    NOSE: Sweet peat smoke, in a "yellow direction"; butter and yellow fruits. Orange, lemon rind, qumqat, wet sea soaked wood, some tar and creosote, cut grass, green herbs, rosewater, rubber. Oily. (88p).
    TASTE: The arrival is sweet and very salty. On the mid palate more sweetness and saltiness. Very saline. Quite smoky (it's a dry wood smoke). Unsmoked/unburnt raw peat and twigs. Iodine. (88p).
    FINISH: Salt, iodine, smoke, black pepper. (86p).
    OVERALL: Total score 87 points.

  29. Don Cassi scored this whisky 85 points Expert Senior

    The nose starts off sweet, creamy and grassy with green banana peel, some dust and a strong portion of Ardbeg smoke. After a while, a note of cinnamon will develop. Much less citrus notes compared to the 10.

    Strong and full in the mouth without being alcoholic.

    In the finish, he first pushes a flood of ash in front of him, as is typical of Ardbeg, which is accompanied by dark chocolate and maritime notes.
    Length: 6/10

    Overall great, more intense but still round Ardbeg.

    Note 1-

  30. TechnOBY scored this whisky 86 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      87 87
    • Taste
      86 86
    • Finish
      86 86

  31. Dris scored this whisky 88 points Connoisseur

    In my books, this clearly has been the best Ardbeg Day release for quite a number of years.
    Clear-cut distillery character, strong sweetness from the casks. Some ways it reminds me of when I first tried Ardbeg (ten).
    Tasted it h2h against the Alligator which knocks this one out cold, though...
    All-in-all this is a very enjoyable dram imo despite its lack of complexity

  32. JoachimV scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      88 88
      Rather sweet peat smoke, some citrus fruit and some barbecue herbs such as rosemary, thyme, cloves and some bay leaf.
      Later in the background some red fruit.
      A beautiful sea air at the fishing port.
    • Taste
      86 86
      Next to the peat smoke, quite sweet. Citrus fruit and back the barbecue herbs.
      Smoked strawberries and raspberries.
    • Finish
      84 84
      Short to medium finish. The same flavors as in the mouth return, but not very intense.
      The aftertaste also reminds me of the same aftertaste as eating oysters.

  33. Stanzeflasche scored this whisky 89 points Expert Senior

    At the first nose, vanilla and marshmallow, molasses, then the smoke is felt, charcoal, but also very fine. Then iodine and peat come in. It's very balanced, almost sweet, surprising from this distillery. It's very fresh, a little anise. Then it's this sticky marshmallow that comes back, it's very tasty, we lick our fingers. Vanilla cream, pistachio, chocolate shavings. Right behind, you can smell burnt wood, the day after a forest fire. A little light in the mouth, lemony, but smooth, creamy, and very quickly spicy, pepper and cumin, cloves, nutmeg, fine ash. Bitter ginger, asparagus. Coarse salt. Peat passed with a flamethrower. Very long finish, lignite, we break our teeth on a piece of coal, sparkling water, cola, nuts, hazelnuts, cashews. One has the impression of a little electricity on the tongue, as when one licks the two poles of a battery. Slight bitterness.

    https://ilikesky2020.blogspot.com/2021/11/ardbeg-scorch.html
    • Nose
      90 90
    • Taste
      86 86
    • Finish
      90 90

  34. Killswitch scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      87 87
    • Taste
      88 88
    • Finish
      87 87

  35. elipszis scored this whisky 91 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      92 92
      salty
      lemon
      dry cocoa powder
      toffee
      powerful
      pear
      medicinal
      coal
      banana chocolate
      brown sugar
      peach jam/compote
      (milk flavor on a dry tasting)
    • Taste
      91 91
      burnt wood ash
      oily
      sandy
      extremely salty
      green banana
      from creamy to powerful
      green tea
    • Finish
      91 91
      medium finish
      salty
      sulfur
      pharmacy tickets
      bitter
      powerful

  36. K C Wong scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      87 87

  37. 33rdCASK scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      85 85
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      86 86

  38. claymore84 scored this whisky 84 points Expert Senior

    Tasted on 09-07-2021.

  39. Alex Fridays scored this whisky 85 points Expert Senior

    The color is golden.

    The nose is sweet, with delicate peat, some charcoal and soot, and vanilla sweetness, citrus, herbaceous notes, very little anise.

    The taste is smoky-peaty, but at the same time quite sweet, oily, slightly spicy, which combines grilled meat, citrus fruits and licorice.

    The aftertaste is long-lasting, slightly spicy, at the same time delicately peaty, with vanilla sweetness, herbs, citrus fruits, toffee, creaminess, a small charcoal and light resinousness.

    Well, once again Ardbeg pleasantly surprised by presenting the original whisky. It is not often that you find a successful combination of a heavily peaty whisky aged in first-fill bourbon casks that add vanilla sweetness and creaminess to this smoke. It turned out very well here. Lightened in its essence, peat-fruit-citrus alcohol Ardbeg was successfully combined with barrels of the first filling, giving out an interesting set of flavoring and aromatic nuances. The whisky turned out to be well balanced, quite soft and delicate in taste, while retaining all the smoky-peaty moments.

  40. Lu Cifer scored this whisky 86 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      86 86
    • Taste
      86 86
    • Finish
      85 85

  41. Dris scored this whisky 88 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      88 88
    • Finish
      86 86

  42. Andytka3 scored this whisky 90 points Connoisseur

    1608) Ardbeg, Scorch, The Ultimate, Limited Edition, Fiercely Charred Cask, Fèis Ìle 2021
    Plenty of hypes and story with catchy names, hopes this comes with desired quality than just another blah-blah.
    • Nose
      N- Deep, thick and fat smokes allowing the juice honey dew melon, natural old herbs and fagara pepper to ooze through, before landed on bed of vanilla sponge. Pinch of salts on the clean distillates carrying the subtle minerality and hot stones at the spines. Free flowing aroma packed with strength that grow so well overtimes with more punchy smoke, alluring coastal breeze and generous sweet fruits. (92/23)
    • Taste
      P- Mouth-full of iodine and medicinal accompanied by maritime nuances, well rounded secondary coats of greasy burnt oak. Rich coastal influence lined with dark spicy liquorice candy. (91/22)
    • Finish
      F- Long, rising warm smokes with juicy fruits, as well burnt citrus peels, ashy and pickle dry. Capped off superbly with unusual tinge of sweet honey dew at retrohale. (91/22)

      B/B- 92/23

      Weighted Rate- 90pt Look forward trying the Committee Release version.

  43. WillWhisky scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    This version is nice for daily, looking forward to the white label version
    • Nose
      Cream soda, nuts, some ash, ginger, all combined well, soft and nice
    • Taste
      Light came, light spicy, ash, light cream soda at the back
    • Finish
      Smooth and mid length, cane sweet, ash, dark coffee

  44. Thoma scored this whisky 84 points Expert Senior

    A good Ardbeg overall but I stick to core range:) I consider these are experiments. This is definitely not a 86 or 87 for me.
    • Nose
      85 85
    • Taste
      84 84
    • Finish
      84 84

  45. dominikbraun scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    Very burnt out, ashy, sooty, dirty, smoky. The absolute nightmare for those who like it more flowery. Wonderful! To be honest, apart from the rustic and red-fruity side, it is kept rather simple in terms of the breadth of the range of flavors.
    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      87 87

  46. Wolf68 scored this whisky 84 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      85 85
    • Taste
      84 84
    • Finish
      84 84

  47. wisekyofcourse did not rate this whisky Connoisseur

    when the soot is confronted with the peat and the liquorice, some vegetal notes but the impression is good to chew, to breathe and to taste "peated".

  48. STL scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      86 86
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      87 87

  49. geriud scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      87 87
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      86 86

  50. LordIslay scored this whisky 88 points Expert Senior

    The light version of the Commettee Scorch!
    Much better than the last Ardbeg-Day bottlings!
    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      88 88
    • Finish
      87 87

  51. Derufus scored this whisky 77 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      79 79
    • Taste
      76 76
    • Finish
      75 75

  52. olegborgol scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    Sweet and smoky, quite drinkable, but liquid and the finish weakens. He can't keep up with Corrie and Guess
    • Nose
      87 87
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      86 86

  53. Ninofdram scored this whisky 79 points Connoisseur

    Just not my cup of tea. Nothing I like in Ardbeg is represented in the flavour. The chemical flower/violet taste ruins it completly.

    The name Scorch made me expect a fierce and brutal dram but it's everything but that :(
    • Nose
      82 82
    • Taste
      76 76
    • Finish
      78 78

  54. aryehf did not rate this whisky Expert Senior

    According to interview with Dr. Bill Lumsden on 'one nation under whisky' podcast the scorch was matured on the same casks used for the Ardbeg Alligator (refill of course). Since the Alligator was released on 2011 one can deduct as well that the scorch is 9-10 YO.
    Reference can be found in https://www.podbean.com/ew/pb-wwwpu-105233e starting on the 55th minute.

  55. gaboruso scored this whisky 86 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      86 86
    • Taste
      86 86
    • Finish
      85 85

  56. Harvey scored this whisky 70 points Expert Senior

    No, No, No, hardly recognizable as an Ardbeg.
    This is so thin, theres nothing here i can relate to Ardbeg.
    WTF are they made to do at the distillery...

  57. lgbjorling scored this whisky 94 points Newbie

  58. katarn_rb scored this whisky 89 points Expert Senior

    I like it better every time
    • Nose
      89 89
      Sage, fennel, mild smoke, some tar and tea aromas
    • Taste
      89 89
      Easy to drink, lemon, menthol and ashy smoke
    • Finish
      88 88
      Medium, becomes dry, ash

  59. whiskyclick scored this whisky 84 points Expert Senior

    Very sharp nose at 46%. Some herbs in the background and sourness.
    On the palate very watery, not complex at all, only charr and peat.
    Finish very short.

  60. rolabob scored this whisky 88 points Connoisseur

  61. LordBellamy scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    with water: he can take some water, but I don't notice much change. I'd rather leave the water out

    Conclusion: Oh yes, that is a very ashy-smoky Ardbeg, the nose is interesting and knows how to please, plus that somewhat strange sage note. A little too weak in the mouth as well as the finish
    • Nose
      88 88
      ashy smoke and coal soot, smoked apricot, sage, lemony sweetness, caramel, clove, a little pepper
    • Taste
      86 86
      nice start, intense sweetness, lemon, smoky, not quite as oily as expected
    • Finish
      85 85
      ohh, surprisingly short, maximally medium, here again clearly smoky and ashy, light fruit sweetness (apricot), slightly dry at the back and also a bit metallic

  62. Ptrck.24.7 scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      85 85
    • Taste
      87 87
    • Finish
      86 86

  63. Tordeaux scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      87 87
    • Taste
      86 86
    • Finish
      86 86

  64. WhiskyRanked scored this whisky 83 points Expert Senior

    Usual Ardbeg smoky peat, underlying citrus, a little mint & menthol, and a little dark chocolate.

    But wow. This one has even more campfire smoke and ash than other Ardbegs. Fresh dried chillies. Someone suggested hickory and I can agree with that.

    Taste - fresh smoke and ash, a little woody sweetness emerges as it sets. Adding a few drops of water brings out some cool mint and menthol notes and kills the smoke.

  65. Palindrome scored this whisky 86 points Expert Senior

    Takeaway: Right off the bat, the nose catches my attention. Unfortunately, Scorch's palate falls short of the nose, IMO. The finish is mediocre and lacks depth.

    Nose: Some classic Ardbeg notes here, including the typical peat, along with a charcoal note reminiscent of oceanic driftwood embers (there's the toasted oak!), vanilla pod, all spice, teak wood, some industrial notes that border on paint solvents, black pepper, caramel nougat with peanut and marshmallow, tumeric, overly fried rice (to the point of being burned), saffron.

    Palate: The low ABV runs slightly hot for only 46% but not overly hot. Just not as creamy as some Ardbeg special limited releases, such as Dark Cove. No, it is not the smoke in this dram "fooling me." As we shall see, the smoke really isn't that strong compared with past releases or other peaty Islay drams.

    I'm getting a tantalizing note that reminds me of old Ten's from the early 2000's which are vastly superior to today's Ardbeg (yes, even the single cask releases). But then, the note is dashed with what seems like refill wood that is exhausted (100 percent American oak ex bourbon barrels doesn't mean there aren't any refills).

    Tannins from some fresh ex bourbon casks are also noticeable, along with a Honduran whole leaf cigar wrapper (very nice tasting indeed). This said, both kinds of wood (fresh American ex bourbon and older refill American ex bourbon) don't seem to mix very well: a case of "old age having a go at the young" to quote A Clockwork Orange.

    Now I'm getting a musty muslin coastal curtains from a cigar smoker's house (my grandfather's). Notes of cacao and coffee grounds. Dried lemon skin.

    As one continues to sip, the whisky seems more and more lifeless and flat. I feel as though I've been relegated to the Edwin Abbott novel called Flatland in which characters interact in 2-D.

    Finish: Cigarette ash, tired wood fighting fresh wood, Ardbeg peat (no the distillery does not smoke its own peat), vanilla bean ice cream, and a well-used cedar sauna at the height of steam.

    The finish is barely medium in length (medium short). The tongue is left with a bitterness and a lack of satisfaction befitting a mediocre release from Ardbeg. One's brain slowly ceases to crave more as the law of diminishing returns overpowers truckloads of hype from Ardbeg's corporate advertising blitz involving dragons, .

    COMPARISON OF SCORCH TO OTHER SPECIAL RELEASES

    Scorch isn't really as peaty as it claims to be. Alligator was far far more peaty, for example. And the ppm of Ardbeg isn't that high compared with some other Islays (which overdo it sometimes, IMO, such as some of the Octomores). That's not to say that more peat is "more better." It's not necessarily but considering the promotional hype, this release isn't really very smokey or dragon-like.

    I much prefer Alligator to this whisky. In fact, I much prefer Day, Ardbog, Dark Cove, both Beists, and nearly all of the pre-2006 Tens. I also prefer the earlier Ugeadails to this. The 46% is lame (not even a couple tenths of a point higher than the Ten?).

    I've seen Dr. Bill speak in person. He's quite a performer. Here he is in a wizard's cape hamming it up with a lovely flaxen-haired lass: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6xL43BvRt2k

    I really enjoyed Bill's lecture in person a few year's back; however, as he'd mentioned how the pre-French-owned Ardbeg distillery had shoelaces tied to the light switches, I couldn't help thinking how much better those old skool Scottish men were as whisky makers than the new high tech Ardbeg.

    Yea, verily . . . ye olde barley was simply better, and it can't be found these days. So there's no way to duplicate that, but some distilleries have gotten even better than the older releases. For instance, Bruichladdich releases (overall) tasted better in 2015 to me than in 2005. Dr. Bill's handiwork in terms of promotion outpaces the actual product. I miss the old Ardbeg that didn't need fancy concepts to sell the whisky. It was just so damned good. And it's not any longer. Not like the old days.

    Scorch is a case in point for my nostalia for the past. It just doesn't measure up even to what was coming out of Ardbeg ten years ago. Because ten years ago, it was the Alligator and ten years ago, I was nearly passing out from sheer joy as I stocked up on bottles of that. If I had only known how far Ardbeg and the rest of the industry could fall, then I would have stocked up far more than I did. Because my stash of Alligator is all gone now. Aside from a few samples in little jars that I've kept like some sort of eldritch witch doctor in my pantry.

    p.s. One more thing: I think age is a factor here. Alligator tasted older. This one tastes about like the ten (age wise, not in terms of smoke which is more than the ten obviously), with a very few slightly older and quite a few younger barrels thrown in. The younger ones don't really compliment the older ones.

    In the early 2000's Tens, for instance, the younger 10 year old casks really went well with the older casks that were thrown in as a "gratis." Gawd, those early tens were good! And they were good because expert blenders mixed old with young so well.

    In this case, there really isn't much "old" to speak of, nothing much over ten years that I can taste, and plenty younger than that.

    Still, this release isn't as bad as some of the recent Day releases. IMO, Smaug er I mean Scorch is better than Auriverdes, Perpetuum, Kelpie, Grooves, and Drum.

    HERE IS MY SCORE: 86.5

  66. Danlow scored this whisky 91 points Expert Senior

    Take a look at the rating of didi1893, it fits very well!
    Once again a good Ardbeg as a special release with its own, unmistakable note: a coal-like ash. It's like a coal mine, where there is plenty of coal in the air. Well-oiled machines are also used there, which also give off steel aromas.
    On the other hand, the whisky is very sweet, which I don't always find at Ardbeg. Interesting and tasty.
    My rating is sometimes so high because I love Ardbeg (favorite distillery on Islay and No. 2 in general).
    • Nose
      91 91
    • Taste
      92 92
    • Finish
      90 90

  67. Archer scored this whisky 87 points Connoisseur

    Very nice on the nose, on the palate and in the finish, he runs out of breath too quickly. It's a shame, because what it delivered in the nose was very promising, even if it doesn't smell or taste like a classic Ardbeg.
    • Nose
      89 89
      Subtly smoky and with a thoroughly fruity-sweet base. It seems a bit closed at the beginning, but it doesn't give the impression that it will stay that way. And that's right: after standing in the glass for a while, the peat puff attracts and becomes more intense, the fruits turn out to be smoked strawberries and raspberries. Slightly peppery and with a pinch of clove powder, with bay leaves. Yes, it is becoming more and more intense in terms of aroma, a very nice development.
    • Taste
      87 87
      Very pleasant start, slightly creamy. The strawberries and raspberries on the nose, appropriately clear peat smoke, which, however, has nothing of the cold Ardbeg ashtray with the splash of lemon, which is otherwise quite common at Ardbeg, but it is warm and velvety. Milk chocolate, milk coffee, mild pepper. Unfortunately, it looks a bit watery and thin at the back - I had already written that he comes back with flavor, peat and pepper and teaches me better.
    • Finish
      86 86
      Just about medium length, dry and slightly ashy. Obviously he has exhausted himself a bit with the last kick on the tongue, because here in the finish he really kinks too quickly. Although delicious fresh strawberries, chocolate, honey and mild smoke, unfortunately it goes off too quickly.

  68. BarrelBeast scored this whisky 85 points Expert Junior

    Youtube Review: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sJH-dpth9Fw
    • Nose
      84 84
    • Taste
      86 86
    • Finish
      84 84

  69. face scored this whisky 84 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      85 85
    • Taste
      85 85
    • Finish
      83 83

  70. WiltChamberlain scored this whisky 84 points Connoisseur

    Once again an overpriced, overrated hype bottling. At least better than the last 2 bottles.

  71. didi1893 scored this whisky 89 points Connoisseur

    A really interesting and special Ardbeg! Compared to Uigeadail and Corryvreckan, it is much milder and smokier, of course a few percent alcohol is missing, although the unusually sweet and intense smoky note compensates for this. Thanks to the extremely burned out barrels and the resulting smoke, soot and ash notes, the scorch goes strongly in the direction of the notorious alligator, although in my opinion it cannot quite hold a candle to the alligator. Thanks to its harmonious and mild nature, the Schorch immediately tempts you to take another sip or glass, which makes it damn dangerous ...
    • Nose
      Light caramel shimmers amber in the Premium Snifter, a multitude of thick and oily "legs" adorns the glass wall ... While pouring, a small drop dripped onto the finger of the left hand and has been giving off its wonderfully smoky aroma since then, this intensity alone leads to extremely charred and close burnt out barrels. At the first nosing, wooden smoke mixes with burnt wood tones and fly ash, grilled apricots and peaches are sweet and fruity, hints of wet herbs and juicy spices flatter the nose. The first impression is extremely mild and harmonious in spite of its smoky nature, again immediately afterwards sweet fruit with caramel and toffee comes into its own. Spicy wood plays with a hint of resin and pine needles, menthol and hints of sour citrus fruits are minimal.
    • Taste
      The first sip wets the lips creamy, in the next moment soot and ash dominate, warm smoke clad the palate with burnt wood tones while a pinch of pepper slowly becomes noticeable on the tongue. The second sip looks much more metallic and dirtier, burnt wood and dying embers heat up the tongue, cozy warm wood smoke draws through the palate down the throat. Burnt hazelnuts, soot, ashes, herbs and spices exude their tart but warming aroma in the entire mouth area, sweet grilled fruits play with grapefruit and lemons while menthol and eucalyptus slowly become noticeable with liquorice and cedarwood.
    • Finish
      Soot and ash rise from the stomach area, warm smoke and banished wood play with roasted nuts and an intense mixture of spices, the aftertaste becomes smearier and soapy. I slowly get the feeling that the aftertaste never fades, roasted nuts with slightly resinous pine needles stick to my tongue again ...

  72. ChrisE scored this whisky 87 points Expert Senior

    • Nose
      87 87
    • Taste
      86 86
    • Finish
      87 87

  73. Whisky-Connaisseur did not rate this whisky Expert Senior

    The Scorch is also convincing at drinking strength all along the line. Delightful peat smoke aromas mingle with citrus notes and a creamy, oily sweetness to create a pleasant taste experience. The Ardbeg Day 2021 can come!

    I thank Moët Hennessy Germany for the complimentary sample!

    https://www.whisky-connaisseur.de/2021/05/31/ardbeg-scorch-general-release-2021/
    • Nose
      The nose starts off with sweet peat smoke, along with burnt wood, anise and sage. Fruity notes come through with grilled apricots and some orange. Notes of herbs, some bitumen and ash emerge in the background.
    • Taste
      Oily on the palate with a honey sweetness and a fresh citrus note. Then fruity apricot, accompanied by malt sugar and sweet peat smoke. Becomes a little dry towards the finish with liquorice and bitumen.
    • Finish
      The finish is long, creamy and oily with liquorice sweets, plus some tar and subtle smoke.

      With water: After adding a few drops of water, a little more smoke on the nose, more liquorice, but less sweetness. On the palate, however, again clearly sweeter with honey, plus fresh citrus notes and oranges with warming herbal notes, like sage. Clearly spicier towards the finish with pepper, anise and peat smoke, accompanied by liquorice, bitumen and ash. The finish is still long, but much drier with ash, liquorice, tar and subtle peat smoke.

  74. Comet67 scored this whisky 89 points Connoisseur

    • Nose
      88 88
    • Taste
      90 90
    • Finish
      89 89

  75. Diver scored this whisky 91 points Member Junior

    A round, slightly sweet taste, untypical for Ardbeg. Has addictive potential :-)

  76. m4y4 did not rate this whisky Member Senior

    There are 2 versions of this bottling. Bottles for French market are delivered in a paper bag, the rest of countries come with the traditional box.

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