Thompson Bros Unpeated Ledaig 26 Year (1995)

Scotch Whisky Review #448: Thompson Bros Unpeated Ledaig 26 Year (1995)

Distillery: Tobermory.

Bottler: Thompson Bros.

Region: Island.

Age: 26 Year. Distilled on September 5th 1995 and bottled in May of 2022.

ABV: 44.7%.

Color: 0.3, Old Gold. Natural Color and Non Chill Filtered.

This dram is the twenty-third of 2022’s Christmas Countdown! Whiskies from previous years can be found here.

Every year, I look at the advent calendar offerings that pop up across the pond and think that it would be super cool to do something like that (it is actually the inspiration for my review spree in December). Turns out, I wasn’t the only one who wanted to do one so between /u/federalagents, /u/DangerousDoorknob, and I we put our own together! This is the twenty-second dram of the calendar. It was reviewed partially blind as in I know the whiskies in the calendar but not the order.

Nose: It is intoxicating, I just want to keep smelling it. There are orchard fruits galore in really fresh and ripe apples and pears. A Korean pear puree and pineapple syrup also come through. Kumquats, especially the bit of the waxiness from the rind, also show up giving a bit of tartness to go with all the sweets. A smidge of honeydew melon wraps things up.

Palate: Honey chamomile tea comes out first. There is a tart citrus note of Pomelo. A bit of Special K cereal brings follows before you get a fruity wax note, perhaps kumquats again? Strawberries, especially the little white bits near the stem, and dried strawberries follow the bit of wax. As you’ve let it sit for a bit, you get some Honeycomb cerealand some malt barley which gives a bit of earthiness to an otherwise very fruity whisky.

Finish: Long. Honeycomb cereal, strawberry jam Linzer cookies, and a bit of a wax-like from a nice thick berry jam are the stand out notes. A smidge of chocolate wraps things up.

Guess: Scotland. Malt. Island. 26-30 Years. 43-46% ABV. Thompson Bros Ledaig 26.

Reveal: Thompson Bros Unpeated Ledaig 26 Year (1995).

Conclusion: Unpeated Ledaig? Is that even a thing? Apparently so, the London Whisky Club has a great write up about what exactly that is. In short, it is most likely the product of first non-peated run of spirit following a peated run. If this is a representative of what that version of Tobermory’s spirit looks like, they need to just constantly switch between non-peated and peated to make more of this stuff. Frankly, it is delicious. It is fruity, waxy, a bit earthy and overall virtually perfect. There is so much complexity and depth of flavor here and I just wanted to keep drinking more and more of it. My notes for this dram end with “why is all gone already” and I still feel that way a day later.

Final Score: 96.

Scotch Whisky Review #448, Island Review #72, Whisky Network Review #605

Scoring Legend:

  • 96-100: The perfect dram, nectar of the gods.
  • 90-95: Near perfect, there is something truly special about this whisky and I will always try to keep a bottle of this in my collection if feasible.
  • 85-89: Very good to amazing, almost the complete product and I’m likely wanting a bottle or two.
  • 80-84: Quite good, pleasant overall though there is usually a few things that could be improved still.
  • 75-79: Good, enjoyable to drink but ultimately flawed.
  • 70-74: Alright, solid and wouldn’t go out of my way to get it.
  • 60-69: Meh, still drinkable.
  • Below 59: If you have a bottle of this, start cooking with it instead.

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