Last October in a discussion of how single malts "age" or "oxidize" while sitting open I posted my thoughts on what happened to a bottle of the Ardbeg 17 I had left open for the better part of a year.
Douglas W. Hoyt replied
I thought this was interesting so at Douglas' suggestion I did a
head to head test..and invited three friends along. All three had
previously had and enjoyed a number of different Ardbegs so none
were going in totally blind, however all they knew was that they
were being given the 17 and another whisky that was supposed to
be much like the 17.
The "Fresh" 17 got the following comments
1) smokier nose ..sweeter .. earthier .. shorter finish seemed
less flavorful in comparison.
2) orangey.. smokey.. more peat.. more complex.. not as smooth.
3) "something funny in the nose, smoke and..?" caramel.. peat ..
4) Sharper ... hotter .. smoke and peat
The "Older" 17 drew the following comments
1) sweet .. honey ..initial hot note turns fuller and smooth ..
cooler.. "easy drinkin"
2) similar colour.. easier on the nose .. very smooth ..flavor
holds up over time.. larger finish.
3) sweeter nose .. oily .. peat ..stronger finish .. longer
4) less hot .. fruitier .. smoother .. longer finish.. less
It was evenly split as to which whisky was preferred.. There was
a great deal of surprise expressed when I told them what we had
been tasting... everyone would have sworn we were drinking
- posted 16 years ago