Bruichladdich is known for its ACE’d bottlings (additional cask enhancement) which are basically wine finishes. A couple of years ago, we already had a Blacker Still of which this is the successor.
The 19 years old Bruichladdich Black Art is a tribute to alchemy. It was finished in bourbon casks as well as different types of wine casks in warehouse n°12. The spectacular pink hue already informs you about the wine treatment.
Bruichladdich 19yo 1989 ‘Black Art’ (51,1%, OB 2009, 6000 btl.)
Nose: definitely wine treated. Hints of port wine with sourish notes that remind me of cellars and of raspberry vinegar. Lots of red berries, strawberry marmalade, grapes, hints of cherry liqueur. A bit of musty oak as well. Enticing, but very very winey.
Mouth: less fruity sweet than I expected although there is still berry juice to be found. Fresh, sour notes again, then some grapefruit, heavy wine and wood. Cooked strawberries.
Finish: warm, quite long, winey.
This Bruichladdich won’t convert me to the dark religion of wine treatment, but it does show beautiful notes of red fruits. Thumbs up for the packaging by the way. Still available. Around € 80.