Ardbeg Wee Beastie is a 5 year-old and the newest addition to the core range, the youngest and supposedly feastiest Ardbeg of recent times.
The whisky uses ex-bourbon and ex-Oloroso sherry casks for maturation.
Ardbeg 5 yo ‘Wee Beastie’ (47,4%, OB 2020)
Nose: starts on raw peat and tarry peat. Then widening with coppery notes, raw wool and a hint of artisan mezcal. Sweet pepper and pear in the background, with citrus brightness and barbecued herbs. Minty touches. Young and quite immediate, complexity is not huge but it’s not immature. Surprisingly good even.
Mouth: peat, with green apples, lemon juice and a little vanilla now. Ashy smoke, mentholated notes and green peppers. Gentle medicinal notes – overall just a wee beast indeed. Liquorice, some grassy notes and ginger.
Finish: medium, with spice, mint and cold ashes.
This Wee Beastie is quite a relaxed, fairly easy, uncomplicated version of Ardbeg, far less aggressive than I expected from the name. It’s an impressive every-day expression, though maybe not what you need once you’ve grown accustomed to the classic 10 Years. Available from TyndrumWhisky or Master of Malt for instance.