Any truth to that rumour?
(While I prefer the 10 yr. old over the 17, I quickly ran out and bought the last 2 bottles on my local shelf. - Can't be too careful!)
* The 17yo was vatted from limited stocks, and it also dates back to a period when the distillery was mostly closed. So it is possible that sufficient stock is no longer available.
* I noticed Jim Murray made a point of suggesting that the later batches of 17yo (which he wasn't involved with ) were going downhill, and it might be time to take it off the market. (Whisky Bible, 2004).
Hopefully Gordon/Spirit of Islay can provide some more knowledgable advice?
It didn't resume production again until around 1990 when Allied bought the distillery, but they didn't run it long before closing it again. Andf then Iain Henderson started up production again. launching the Ardbeg TEN and then Glenmorangie came along buying it from Allied.
As for stock Ardbeg has a problem these days, a problem that's not going to be solved very quickly. That's why they've launched the Very Young, and probably will continue with such youngish whiskies until the maturing stock has come of age.
It is not as smoky as the TEN year old standard but I love the 17yo so I got another bottle. It is kind of nice to taste the Ardbeg without all the smoke, just some peat, phenol, chocolate, Ardbeg sweetness and so on. Probably should have gotten another as well but there are now just two bottles left in the province so I'm probably out of luck!
There also seems to be a few bottles left in Sweden, though the importer has turned the price up quite high - 799SEK (£61.50).
Mr Singh at The Whisky Exchange also has a few bottles it seems, priced at £65.
If you want a less peaty Ardbeg, try the Uigeadail. A bit more sweetness and less peaty than the 10, quite different.
I haven't tried the '91 OMC. Amazingly, I don't even see it on the SOI website so perhaps he hasn't tried it either!
Ardbeg is very hard to get here, hopefully the new owners will do something about that.
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