Ardbeg is adding the “Aged and Caged” 25 Years Old Whisky to its core line up. The new expression will become the Islay distillery’s oldest Whisky permanently on offer.
Ardbeg 25 Years Old was distilled during the 1990s, at a time when the distillery was only producing a trickle of new make spirit every year. Ardbeg from this period is therefore extremely rare, but the Whisky creation team deemed that after a quarter of a century, the malt was so exquisite that it should be bottled and released as a permanent expression – albeit in limited quantities.
The Whisky proves age cannot tame Ardbeg’s smoky power, but it can yield some of the most complex flavors ever to emerge from the distillery. It offers whisky lovers the opportunity to experience Ardbeg at its most intricate, balanced and beguiling. On the nose, there’s a burst of smoked cream, peppermint and toffee, along with Ardbeg’s classic fennel and pine resin, which are accompanied by distant earthy bonfires mix with herbal and tropical fruit notes. The palate is extremely vibrant with a hot peppery mouthfeel leading to a burst of sherbet lemon sweetness, hints of carbolic soap and tar, more creamy toffee, aniseed and chilli pepper. The finish is as elegant and smooth with a long, mellow, lingering aftertaste, with lots of cream, fudge and delicate antiseptic notes.
“After a quarter of a century in the cask, you’d be forgiven for imagining that Ardbeg 25 Years Old would have lost some of the hallmark Ardbeg smoky punch,” comments Ardbeg’s Whisky Creator, Dr Bill Lumsden. “I can assure you it hasn’t. And yet there’s also a remarkable complexity and elegance to this whisky that I find utterly captivating. It’s unmistakably Ardbeg, but unlike any Ardbeg you’ve tasted before.”
The Whisky comes in a unique gun metal bottle encased in a beautifully intricate metal ‘cage’ – a modern take on the classic Ardbeg knotwork, and symbolic of the untamed complexity of this extraordinary whisky.
Bottled at 46% ABV, Ardbeg 25 Years Old will be released worldwide beginning January 2021 for the price of $850. A limited number of bottles will be available in Sweden from November 2020.