Bruichladdich 2010 Organic
The whisky they distil from the organic barley of Mid Coul reflects the complex natural flavours of the landscape. Just as their stillmen refuse to abandon the traditional crafts of distillation in favour of automation or industrialisation, so farmer William Rose rejects the use of herbicides, pesticides and artificial fertilisers. Crop rotation is key. Their barley must take its turn in a seven year farm cycle that also produces organic cattle, sheep, oats, beans, grass, carrots, market gardening and a megawatt of green electricity. Respecting the land, the soil and the climate nourishes a genuine and thorough understanding of terroir and the results are pure Bruichladdich.
Nose – Fresh malted barley, melon, peach and apricot. Opens up with notes of rich honey, lemon meringue and floral notes of gorse and heather. Vanilla and caramel and pastry notes from the wood are nicely balanced with the intensity of the fruit, waves of pear apple and gooseberry still hint at the fresh green fruits of the spirit.
Taste – Sweet pear drops, vanilla fudge, chocolate and marzipan initially. No aggression here at all just well-integrated flavours and a round gentle texture. The oak and malt notes complement each other so well overlapping each other with toasted rye bread, buttery popcorn and fresh oak, vanilla fudge and smooth caramel merging. The organic barley seems to give more fruit from the distillation and a more viscous texture which is a joy to the olfactory senses.
Finish – Sweet citrus, lemon drops, come through well on the finish and a slight char from the oak gives depth. The finish feels more marine, a little briny alongside the oak and malt which works beautifully.
Character – Elegance, richness and definite Bruichladdich DNA. The depth of flavour comes from the malt and its transformation through the alchemy of distillation. The spirit is pure and fresh, the oak rich and honied, together with time the combination of great oak, superb barley and slow distillation make for an amazing exploration of the fundamentals of making whisky.