Ardbeg has announced its Ardbeg Day 2017 bottling: The Kelpie. Let’s find out more about this new limited release!
Ardbeg Day falls on Saturday, 3rd June 2017. This year, in homage to the sea that surrounds the Distillery’s remote Scottish island home, Ardbeg will again release a celebratory Limited Edition expression. Ardbeg Kelpie is the first Ardbeg to be matured in Virgin Black Sea oak casks. Renowned for the deep flavours that they impart and rarely used in whisky making – these casks bring a distinct intensity to the world’s smokiest, peatiest Islay malt whisky.
Dr Bill Lumsden, Ardbeg’s Director of Distilling, Whisky Creation and Whisky Stocks, in his continuing search for intriguing casks, was inspired by the depth of flavour imparted by the Black Sea casks. Grown and seasoned in the Adyghe Republic, which leads down to the Black Sea coast, these casks impart incredibly deep flavours.
The whisky was then married with hallmark Ardbeg, matured in ex-bourbon barrels, to amplify Ardbeg’s characteristic style and create a whisky of incredible depth.
As the festivities begin on Islay, Ardbeg’s loyal following – the Ardbeg Committee – and their friends across the world will be invited to join underwater-themed events which pay tribute to the whisky’s namesake – the kelpie, this legendary water demon is said to lurk in the Atlantic Ocean off Islay’s shores.
What’s this mysterious Kelpie? 😮
Situated on the shore of Islay’s southernmost coast, the Ardbeg Distillery has always held a deep connection to the sea – and those who live nearby have passed down through generations the stories of mysterious beasts said to live beneath the waves. Among the most terrifying of these is the kelpie – a Scottish shape-shifting water spirit, rumoured to take the form of a horse or a bull and prey on unwitting travellers.
Legend has it that long ago, a farmer walking near Ardbeg’s shoreline was almost dragged to sea by a water bull. Managing to overcome and rope the creature, he locked it in a barn where it cried for mercy. At dusk, the farmer’s daughter was chased by a water horse seeking revenge for its kin. The terrified girl ran to the barn and released the water bull, whereupon the malevolent beasts took flight back to the sea.
Distillery Manager Michael (Mickey) Heads said: “Ardbeggians and their smoky malt friends will have the chance to celebrate with a dram or two of Ardbeg Kelpie. With a heart matured in Black Sea casks, this whisky’s extraordinary depth and its waves of salty seaweed and tarry rope, hint at what might be hiding under the sea…”
“For now, the finer details of our plans for will remain a closely guarded secret, but rest assured Ardbeg Day 2017 will be another legendary worldwide celebration of all things Ardbeg.”
Ardbeg’s general release of Kelpie at 46% ABV, launches on Ardbeg Day (3rd June), the expression will be available to purchase from Ardbeg Embassies* for a two week exclusive period. Kelpie will then be available at Ardbeg Embassies, whisky specialists and department stores with a RRP of £98.00.
The Committee only release of Kelpie at 51.7% ABV will be made available on 16th March 2017 at 9.00AM, exclusively from www.ardbeg.com
Ardbeg Day will be celebrated at the distillery on Saturday 3rd June 2017 and at participating Ardbeg Embassies around the world.
Ardbeg Kelpie is non-chill filtered for extra texture and mouthfeel.