Ardbeg 12 yo 1998/2011 (55.4%, The Nectar of the Daily Drams) Colour: straw. Nose: now we’re starting to talk. More presence, more complexity (although this is no complex whisky thus far), more fruitiness (pears) and a most enjoyable rootiness (gentian, celeriac). Some smoke of course but it’s no peat monster. With water: develops gently, with more putty, almonds, marzipan, apple peelings and soot/ashes. Mouth (neat): once again, we’re much higher – so to speak – than with the SMWS. Still a tad brutal but this is more complex, with kippers, liquorice, ginger, more smoked fish (salmon), marzipan, green tea, more liquorice… Very good, very good! With water: now it’s perfect! Not complex, not mindboggling, not really majestic but absolutely perfect. Finish: quite long and a tad rounder, which is always welcome in a finish (and seldom happens). Comments: I think Ardbeg starts to become really interesting at 12 years of age, unless it’s ridden with sweetish vanilla of course (sherry’s all right ;-)). SGP:447 - 89 points.