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Friday, January 6, 2023

Ardmore 21 year old 1998 Single Malts of Scotland, cask 750753

(Ardmore cluster homepage)

Because today's whisky (from a non-sherried cask, this time) is one of the rare Ardmores to have made it across the Atlantic, I made a concerted to try it. I liked it, but took no notes. And if an experience was not detailed online, then it never happened. Thus I was happy to have scored a sample of it via a bottle split last year. So now a thing will happen.

Distillery: Ardmore
Region: Highlands (Eastern)
Independent Bottler: Elixir Drinks
Series: Single Malts of Scotland
Age: 21 years old (27 May 1998 - 1 November 2019)
Maturation: Hogshead
Cask #: 750753
Outturn: 247 bottles
Alcohol by Volume: 50.2%
(from a bottle split)


A very naked Ardmore. L'eau de vie de l'océan (I probably did that wrong), concrete, seaweed, and lox fill the nose. Peaches in syrup, raspberry jam, and hints of roses linger in the background. The palate reads like good new make with the edges trimmed off. It's mostly bitter herbs, sea salt, lemongrass, and a hint of peach. Some Caol Ila-ish peat floats around in there too. Its finish is a bit of a palate-shaver, like a raw baby whisky. Very salty and seaweedy, with a hint of lemon. Stronger than the ABV leads on.

DILUTED to ~46%abv, or ½ tsp of water per 30mL whisky

Ah there it is, on the nose, the snuffed beach bonfire. *sigh* Some rotting kelp in the midground, flowers and lemons in the back. The palate has become bitterer, harsher, very edgy. There's a touch of sweetness to it, but also a hint of soap. It finishes bitter and salty.


With its very youthful style, this Ardmore should have batted leadoff. Because of the whisky's rawness, one's nose is welcomed while one's palate is battered. The two senses diverge further after the whisky has been diluted. It's a fighter, though certainly a crisp winter pour, and I'd still choose it over my bottle of 6 year old Ardlair that I'll never finish. It's still available in The States, but the price keeps me away, despite the wonderful sniffer.

Availability - It can be found
Pricing - $200-$230
Rating - 85

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