Review: Ardbeg Dark Cove


See detailed history of Ardbeg here.

Ardbeg DistilleryIslay fans get ready for Ardbeg’s 2016 limited edition release! Ardbeg Dark Cove will be launched on May 28, 2016 as a limited edition release. It’s a vatting of whisky matured in ex-bourbon casks and dark sherry casks. According to the press release it is the darkest colored Ardbeg release ever – which means that there is probably more sherry than bourbon casks in this one. It’s hard to know for sure since there are many variables for coloration. This expression is bottled at 46.5% ABV and will be available at retailers nationwide by the end of May. If you want a bottle, act quickly since this Ardbeg limited releases tend to sell out quickly.

Tasting Notes

Ardbeg Dark CoveNose: sweet rich peat, smoke, burnt rubber, lemon citrus, vanilla, oak spices, beef jerky

Mouth: black pepper, lemon citrus, caramel, star anise, full/rich mouth feel, apricots, raisins

Finish: black pepper, lingering peat, salty, very smoky, cereal notes, barrel char, salty beef jerky

Score: 84/100

Verdict: The nose on this whisky is full of sweet rich peat. There’s loads of smoke, beef jerky and oak spices. Behind that you’ll find hints of lemon citrus and vanilla. On the mouth there’s black pepper and lemons to start. Then there’s caramel, apricots, raisins and star anise. I really enjoyed the fruity sweetness that shines through. The finish is very smoky with some cereal notes and barrel char. I wish the finish rounded out a bit with some dark red fruit sweetness rather than burnt wood chip aftertaste. Nevertheless t his is a delicious whisky and I give major kudos to Ardbeg for releasing a NAS whisky without sacrificing flavor.


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