The eights series of Bruichladdich's Black Art series, which is made up of a secret cask combination.
Edition 8.1 is a 26-year-old made up of whisky distilled in 1994, the last year before Bruichladdich mothballed production in early 1995. (They would distil in small batches towards the end of the decade before firing up again in the 2000s).
The Black Arts series are ofen seen as a pinnacle of the Bruichladdich range, highlighted by complexity and a plethora of cask types. Unpeated, this was bottled at 45.1% with 12,000 bottles worldwide.
Nose: The complexity of flavours combining on the nose makes this a joy to try and decipher. Initially a Citrus, lime zest, fresh orange style is met with a rich caramel and oaky notes of dried apricot, pipe tobacco, maple syrup. Oak shavings and toasted hazelnuts. Vanilla syrup. Leather and poached pears with honey and apricot jam coming through as the complexity opens up and the Floral nature of our spirit shows its hand with rose and geranium and after a little time a hint of wild thyme on the breeze. The balance between the spirit and the oak is beautiful, with the oak nurturing the delicate nature of the spirit. That is the hallmark of this edition of Black Art.
Palate: That citrus style, lemon zest and then the sweetness from the oak meets the palate beautifully. The texture is like warm honey, and brings notes of maple syrup, walnut, toasted oak and coconut. That delicate sweetness floods the palate with vanilla, dried apricot, caramel and millionaires shortbread. The light creamy texture and palate is so soft and gentle but packed with depth and as we draw towards the finish the delicate Bruichladdich DNA of soft stoned fruit comes to the fore.
Finish: The finish is gentle, sweet caramel, dried fruit, sultana, lemon drizzle cake. Hazel nuts, milk chocolate. It’s softness is calming.
- Single Malt