I love the smell of peat in the morning.
Being a long time peated whisky drinker, I have found that I sometimes, or very easy get immune to peat, so if I say a whisky isn't too peaty, don't trust me! (necessarily)
1. The Hakushu Heavily Peated 48%
A Japanese distillery with a range of different stills. This makes them capable of producing different styles. Another expansion of possibilities is to use peated malt.
Nose : The peat isn't dominating, but it's present, fruity, like the fruitiness of apples and pears.
Palate : Very drinkable, easy going and delicious, also somewhat subtle in its expression, making me think of older Islay's more than the younger smack-in-your-face ones. The peat emerges into a spicy vanilla lemony finish, which is very delicate.
Finish : Short/medium with the sugarly lemon being dominant
Comment : I wouldn't have named it Heavily Peated, it's much too delicate for that description. This is a NAS whisky, but if i'ts young it seems like the hotter climate of Japan has matured it very well. I am glad I chose this as the first whisky of the day, it would most likely not benefit from following other whiskies, peated or not.
2. Bruichladdich Mòine Mhòr 3D 2nd Edition 50%
This is a vatting of different styles and ages of whisky distilled at Bruichladdich supposedly from three different decades and three different peating levels
Nose : Some peat, and some solvent like immaturity is just present if you look hard enough
Palate : Feels warm in the mouth, with a lot of wood, spice and lemon under the peat.
Finish : Medium
Comment : This has got some punch, not due to the peat alone but also from the youthness of the whisky, or some of the whisky in the vat. This is really well vatted together and an enjoyable dram
3. Lagavulin "Available only at the distillery" bottled 2010 52.5%
Nose : Sweet, spicy, fruity, dark fruits
Palate : Great full bodied mouthfeel and texture. The sweet PX mixes real well with the peat, but the sherry influence is a lot lot less than in the DE Lagavulins. Peat and vanilla in the end
Finish : Long and very spicy
Comment : This has got some leftover casks for the 91 DE batch in it. PX finished. Bottling Lagavulin at full strength is a very clever idea!
Finally a couple of Ardbegs bottled in 2010
4. Ardbeg 1994 Cadenhead 16yo 55.6%
Nose : A lot of imminent immaturity on the nose, acid like. Not the best nose
Palate : lemon, peat, classic Ardbeg'ish, but the cask didn't have the strongest influence, seems younger than 16- After the nose that did put me off the nice peat-lemon combo is welcoming. The acidity is still here
Finish : Medium
5. Ardbeg 1994 Cadenhead 16yo 57.0%
Quite similar to the above
Nose: Slight acidic as well, but less than the above
Palate : More wood, texture and body, lemon again and a hotter immideate finish
Finish : Medium-long with a hint of coconut
Comment : Mark from Cadenheads told me to get the Laphroaigs instead as he thought they were better. But I wasn't going to Laphroaigeddon. I should learn to listen to advice from wise people