Every year, Douglas Laing releases a new Big Peat whisky for the Fèis Ìle festival and he continues the tradition in 2020 with the new Big Peat 8 Years Old A846. While this year’s festival has been changed to an online format, the independent bottler felt necessary to release a new whisky in celebration.
“Whilst Fèis Ìle – Islay’s annual festival – exists in an entirely different virtual form this year, we (and Big Peat) wanted to mark the occasion the best way we know how – with a particularly innovative limited edition, featuring a cracking story and spectacular spirit within,” said Douglas Laing CEO Chris Leggat.
This year’s bottling honors the A846, a “legendary” road that links whisky fans to distilleries across the Scottish island of Islay before steering up through Jura. “A journey along the A846 is a rite of passage for Islay whisky lovers, and a road that carries countless memorable moments for many,” explained Leggat.
The Big Peat 8 Years Old A846 is aged for eight years and bottled at 46% ABV. It is made without any added colouring and is non-chill-filtered. On the nose, the whisky features notes of “peat, smoked ham, and a fresh seaside saltiness”. The palate brings “chewed leather, streaky bacon and rock salt” accompanied by notes of Madeira and smoked ham on the finish.
The company is also hosting a competition, offering fans the opportunity to win one of 40 tasting packs, and to join the Douglas Laing team for a virtual tasting this month.
Director of whisky Cara Laing explained, “Each year, we proudly donate to the Fèis Ìle charity, an organisation that works tirelessly to showcase Islay to the world.
“At a time when many of us are dreaming of one day making the journey back to the Queen of the Hebrides once more, a sip of Big Peat’s A846 edition seeks to bring his much-loved island home to you, via its unmistakably Islay notes of chewed leather, streaky bacon, punchy peat smoke and rock salt.”
Big Peat 8 Years Old A846 Edition will be available at specialist spirits retailers across the globe beginning June 8. Only 500 cases of the whisky will be made available globally, and each is expected to retail at £45 (US$57).