With a name like The Peat Project, there’s no ambiguity about what you’re going to get. This Port Charlotte variant is a bit misleading in that it’s not a Port Charlotte Scotch (the Port Charlotte distillery closed in 2009), but part of the Port Charlotte line of offerings from Bruichladdich. This is interesting, as the main Bruichladdich whisky is predominantly floral for an Islay and not very peated – though they also bottle a super-peated Scotch called Octomore, ranging up to 258 ppm. Consider this one a middle sibling in the family, yet carrying also some of the floral notes Bruicladdich is known for if you’re patient enough to dig past the peat.
Their website lists this description of the mood (whatever that is) in the drink’s bio: Defiant. They shall not pass. The thin red line.
Location: Port Charlotte
Nose: Peat, licorice, grassy, sheep pasture, brine, earthy, cream
Palate: Peat, herbal, fresh grass, spice, cream, vanilla, cheese
Finish: Peat, more peat
Comments: labeled as 40 ppm (phenol parts per million, a method of measuring the strength of peat in whisky)
Adam – This is unabashedly peaty and I enjoy that quality about it. I find it very curious that unlike a lot of Islay whiskys, the peat is not accompanied at all with smoke. It certainly has a very broad flavor profile, yet not as deep and penetrating as other Islays. More mature than some younger Islays though far from the venerable sages of the island. This is not a bad place to start if you want some extroverted peat that’s not overly complex. I fully enjoy this bad boy.
Kate – This one is peaty, but it doesn’t really hit you in the same way as an Ardbeg does. It’s more a subtle peat, because of all those notes of vanilla and cream. This should be more accessible to the masses.
Meghan – They set out to make a heavily peated Scotch. They succeeded. Peat on the nose, peat on the palate and then from down your esophagus comes a mushroom cloud of peat that infiltrates your entire head and leaves me running to brush my teeth.