“How do you supercharge a blended Scotch whisky with an extra-amount of most-delicate smoke?” – This question resided at very heart of the conception of Black Bottle’s fourth “Alchemy Series” bottling Smoke & Dagger. And resourceful as they are, the whisky makers around Master Distiller Brendan McCarron and Master Blender Julieann Fernandez came up with some one-of-a-kind ideas: First, they finished all grain whisky in the recipe in ex-Ledaig casks, thus instilling in it a most peculiar kind of island smokiness. Second, they advanced far into the sacred halls of Bunnahabhain and salvaged a proportion of uber-heavily-peated Islay malt called “Moine HP”. Third, they contrived a formula of differently aged, matured, produced, and sourced malts and grains that would bring forth a blended whisky that is immensely smoky, but also multi-dimensional and well-arranged. Each measure they took turned out to be a bull’s eye hit: Black Bottle Smoke & Dagger is one helluva peat monster that, when given time, reveals a ton of depths underneath its thick veil of vapor, reek, and fume. Once this limited edition has officially arrived on retail shelves here in Germany, I think I will buy another bottle or two, making sure I will not run dry of this super smoker anytime soon!
Eye: The color of sand.
Nose: Oily, maritime, and peaty … very peaty! Smoke & Dagger’s hefty bouquet launches out at you with salt-crusted ham, burnt driftwood, grilled squid, sea-sprayed planks, BBQ’ed tropical fruits, and all kinds of fumes. Plus sweetness galore in the form of toffee, cookie dough, and vanilla sauce.
Palate: At first, the whisky feels mostly oily. After a short while, it becomes a bit more wet. Flavor-wise, the dram provides lots n’ lots of sweetened smoke; it almost seems as if a layer of tar would cover the tongue – and a layer of icing sugar, too! Time and again, other notes shine through: brandied pear, salted caramel, moist stone, strong licorice, fresh eukalytus, roasted hazelnut …
Finish: Smokiness and sweetness mingle in a very fine and pleasing way. There’s a bit of a fresh kick, too. Think soot and fudge and chocolate and spearmint all thrown into a bowl and stirred well!
Type: Blended Scotch Whisky
Alc. volume: 46.3 per cent
Casks: ex-Ledaig finish (partly)
Bottle size: 0.7 litres
Price: 35.00 Euro
More info: https://www.blackbottle.com/ (Brand)
*** I got the bottle for free from Distell Group. Thank you. ***
“Vapor, reek, and fume” 👏 Sounds like this series is a real hit.