Whisky number 13 in the Tapuz blind tasting competition, and finally something I almost guessed correctly. A sweet, heavily peated treat of a dram. My experience with Port Charlotte is not as varied as I’d like, having only tried the PC10, PC11 and an SMWS bottling, so for my guess I went with the PC11, but thankfully I wasn’t too far off.
Port Charlotte is one of 3 brands of single malt from Bruichladdich distillery on Islay. Bruichladdich itself is unpeated, Port Charlotte is heavily peated and Octomore is extremely peated (upwards of 150 ppm). Bruichladdich is an interesting distillery, constantly doing all sorts of odd experiments with barely types, peat levels, cask types and so on. Unfortunately there is a certain sweet herbal note to their malt that just doesn’t sit right with me. But when that note is combined with some peat, a la Port Charlotte I really like it (I actually didn’t at first but after trying a few PC’s it kind of grew on me).
Port Charlotte was added to the stable fairly recently and they’ve been releasing malts of increasing age every year, with this being the oldest so far. This is a bottling for travel retail (and it has an age statement! Something all too rare in that market).
Aged 12 years. 58.7% ABV. No Colourant added, non-chill filtered and bottled at cask strength.
Nose: Worn leather. Salty peat. Creme Brulee. Sulphur dioxide. Possibly some old world funk. Charred wood. Waxy fruits. Brown sugar. A sweet herbal note.
Palate: Mineral peat. Brine. Bitter wood. Bitter fruits. Caramel toffee. Kahlua. Sweet herbal liqueur.
Finish: Long. Leather. Pepper. Dark fruits. Bits of smoke. Bitter coffee.
Rating: Try this before you buy it.
Global VFM: 3/5
Local VFM: 2/5
This was a solid dram. A really interesting combination of sweet and smoky with some interesting cask influence as well.