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Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Kornog T'aourac Trived peated French malt

And by "French" I mean Bretagne. And by "Kornog" I mean peated Glann Ar Mor. And by "T'aourac Trived", I have no idea.

Let me clarify further. Kornog is the peated single malt produced at Glann Ar Mor distillery in Brittany, a corner of France with considerable Celtic history. Glann Ar Mor approached its production from an old school angle, with direct-fired alembic stills and bottling right on site. Kornog's malt was peated up to 35ppm, and though this specific bottling was matured in bourbon barrels there are some releases that spent time in oloroso or PX casks.

You may notice the past tense verbs in the previous sentence. Apparently the distillery closed in 2015 due to Protected Geographical Indications (PGI) instituted by France. I don't 100% understand the reasoning behind this, so if anyone cares to weigh in on this please do so in the comment section below. In any case, it's a shame, because this is good whisky.

Distillery: Glann Ar Mor
Brand: Kornog
Region: Brittany, France
Age: ???
Maturation: ex-bourbon barrels
Peat level: 35ppm
Bottling year: probably 2010 (BC 2010 batch)
Alcohol by Volume: 46%
Chill-filtration? No
Caramel colored? No
(sample purchased from The Whisky Exchange)

Its color is white burgundy (that description is there to piss off the French). The nose is lovely. Peated peaches and melons. Subtle medicinal and almond extract notes. Simple syrup. Floral peat. Bright and candied. The palate is full of stone fruits + honey + sweet peat. Fried plantains. Grapefruit. A Campari bitterness. A light refreshing peated whisky? It finishes with more honey and mellow peat. Pear nectar and fried plantains. A little bit of coffee. Lots of Campari. Very aromatic.

What a sweet gentle surprise. I didn't add water because it was so cuddly right at 46%. Yes, a cuddly 35ppm peated whisky. The combination of fruit, florals and honey is unlike any Scotch single malts I've had, peated or unpeated. From what I've gathered, this stuff is pretty young too, which makes it even more impressive. If the distillery really has closed permanently, it's a real loss for the whisky community, and France.

Availability - Happy hunting
Pricing - ???
Rating - 88