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Feis Ile 2010 – Port Mor dinner with Bruichladdich

So, again I’m on my iPhone, but connection isn’t so good on Islay (a great reason to come and forget about your phone).

Buffet of Lobster, Scallops, Langoustines and crab!

I’ll be on twitter updating people of my location to get samples of the Master of Malt Drinks by the Dram when I can get signal

Tonight we’re at Port Mor with the guys from Bruichladdich and the food is fantastic. Local oysters are here on the half shell, damn it’s great!  Mark from Whiskycast is here and Robin Laing has just finished a set, so I’m hoping to hear it again tomorrow.

Jim McEwan explained earlier that when the distillery opened there was a need to bottle the various different expressions to generate revenue. Bruichladdich has taken a little bit of a bashing in recent years for this, although in the UK many go unsold a collectors market for these bottles exists in America. Also, in the scope of the distilling world Jim explained with a torn piece of cardboard on the fly diagram that Laddie holds 0.9% of the market share, so I guess they have to work harder to be visible.

I wonder if companies like Diageo look at the innovation and number of releases from such a small distillery and question why small operators are able to multi function in a way they don’t.  You can’t help but wonder when the SWA will start to lobby to restrict the number of spirits produced by one distillery as the the big boys finance directors/teams battle to understand. Will they one day try to a stop Springbank creating Hazelburn and Longrow as a separate brand? What about Port Charlotte or Loch Lowmand distillers Lowmand still spirit (one being Croftengea)?

Using barley grown on Islay

Indie distilleries like Bruchladdich need us to support them more than the companies such as LVMH, Pernod Ricard and Diageo. The big question is do they deserve our support? Tomorrow will hopefully answer the question, but for now we need to head back to our lodgings, but before I go…

We’ve been sampling a couple of whiskies tonight, which I’ll mention when I cover the whole of the Laddie open day. One tasting note I do have is for the Valinch:

Homage to Richard Macaire – Islay Barley 2004,

Cask No #1667    Cask Type: Fresh Sherry Butt     Distilled: 2004

Bottled: 2010       Abv: 57.5%       Total Output: 1060 bottles (50cl)

Nose: This has raisins and big burnt caramel notes on the front of the nose. Malty Tablet, vanilla, pistachio, hazelnuts, and nougat. There is an element of alcohol spice, but with water it calms down.

Palette: The body is thick and sweet enough to entice crème brûlée, but builds up to a nice olorosso/whisky balance. Has youthful spice, which needs water. With water you get more Jerez fruitiness and is very agreeable.

Finish: Spicey without water, but medium-long with a light touch of smoke.

In Summary: I’ll be in the queue at Laddies open day for sure with money in hand!

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Posted in Bruichladdich, Islay, feis ile.

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  1. Martin w' the sare leg says

    Your comments and notes on the “Islay Barley” are spot on. I managed to procure a couple of bottles. Will be sharing / drinking one and hanging on to the other. (If i can!)
    It was great meeting you and the “Bloggers” on Saturday night and the Open Day. Thanks for the Dram in a Bottle!

  2. The Whisky Guy says

    Hey Martin,

    Was great meeting you as well, my post from the weekend are stuck on my phone so trying to get them uploaded.

    Will be in touch soon.

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