Port Charlotte (Bruichladdich) – 12yo – 58.7% abv
Info: This is a Travel Retail release (i.e. you can mostly only get it in airports or at the distillery). It’s being launched tomorrow aboard a Viking Line ferry in the Baltic sea (I hope the storms hold off!).
Colour: Full gold with orangey tints.
Nose: At first maybe slightly closed on the nose; it could be the fairly high ABV, or it could just be that the aging process has given this more of a maturity than you have seen before from Port Charlotte. Given time and warmth there’s a leathery note alongside the gentle beefy peat and thicker oils. A drop of water helps open the nose up a bit.
Palate: The older age has given this dram a fabulous dusty, musty, oaky earthiness on the palate, I love it. You wouldn’t know it’s nearly 60% abv, it’s smooth and easy on the palate, you can hold it on your tongue for ages while exploring the flavours which go from a slight saltiness, to peat, to oak, to gentle sweet citrus notes, to a slight tarry quality; it’s awesome.
Finish: Slow, warming and long. No water needed which seems crazy.
Thoughts: In many ways you could easily imagine this as an older dram than it really is, it oozes quality. It’s one to sip later in an evening and really enjoy with some space and time. PC just seems to get better and better with age, I can’t wait to see what’s yet to come!
Available: Travel Retail from 14th January 2015. RRP £110.
Thanks to Bruichladdich for the sample.