Ledaig 1998/2010 (61.8%, Malts of Scotland, sherry butt, cask #800025, 256 bottles)
Colour: amber. Nose: if you’re afraid of the faintest amounts of gunpowder, struck matches, leather and flints, you may pass on to the next tasting note ;-). In fact, this is one of these sometimes slightly unlikely but often fabulous sherried peat monsters, even if it does not go to eleven on both scales. Hessian galore, dried seaweed, old Barbour jacket, peat smoke, antiseptic, soot and Virginia tobacco. Nice combination, isn’t it? With water: max shoe polish, leather, tobacco and soy sauce, with many coastal notes in the background. Gunpowder as well. The aftermath of a great naval battle?
Mouth (neat): powerful, as punchy as some sherried Port Ellens, I know you know what I mean. Quite brutal in fact, starting with a lot of lime, salt and leather and getting very tarry and ashy. Also some barley sugar in the attack. Some cough medicine too. Tarry brine, should that exist. With water: a little sweeter, with a lot of smoke, liquorice, marmalade and brine. Leather too, tobacco too. It became easier to drink, which isn’t always the case when you add water, mind you.
Finish: long, more on bitter oranges and black pepper. A very pleasant fizziness in the aftertaste, which keeps it playful. Comments: the young independent sherried Ledaigs are usually quite perfect (remember the BBRs?) In my opinion, this one is no exception. I’m wondering why the owners do not launch such bottlings, they must have the casks! SGP:457 - 90 points.