Bruichladdich Port-Charlotte Scottish Barley 50%

The folks over at Bruichladdich broadly categorise their whisky experiments into three groups:

Not so long ago we sampled the Bruichladdich The Organic Scottish Barley 50% – an interesting whisky but not one that jumps out for me.

However it was sufficiently different to prompt interest in exploring their PC and Octomore expressions… thanks to the “Canadian stash” from my aunt and uncle, I had an opportunity to try representations from both!

So what’s up with the Bruichladdich Port-Charlotte? The name Port Charlotte comes from a village near Bruichladdich, which once boasted the Lochindaal Distillery, that ran for 100 years between 1829 and 1929. The approach is to peat to 40 PPM and play around with different barley.

In this case, I sampled the Scottish Barley

Photo courtesy Whisky Lady's uncle

Photo courtesy Whisky Lady’s uncle

And what did I find?

  • Colour – Light straw
  • Nose – Minty, sea salt, invites you to taste! A bit of citrus thrown in… as it opens becomes sweeter, with a faint curd
  • Taste – Malty yumminess, leather, strong herbs, licorice, smokey, a bit of zing, chewy, dry, sweet.. the longer you sip, the more peaty rich earthiness emerges… with fruits added in for sweetness
  • Finish – The gift that keeps on giving, the herbs come back, lots of peat
  • Water – I’ll admit, I was disinclined to add… but glad I did! Brightened the nose, rounded out the flavours on the palate though dampened the finish initially… then sweeeeet! Quite nice with a dash of water

There is lots going on with this one – strong, very direct and impossible to ignore. The herbal quality makes it distinctive… certainly this more to my preference than the Organic. I certainly appreciate what the folks over at Bruichladdich are trying to achieve.

Here’s what the distillery says… warning it is quite a wordy read!

  • Character – The texture is extraordinarily rich with a huge depth of character. The smouldering heat of peat fires pulls you into a whirlpool of islay flavours and aromas but with such finesse that you welcome the storm.
  • Nose – Opening with assertive waves of peat smoke and Atlantic squall, the olfactory system is on high alert in anticipation of some major sensory excitement. A swell of aromatics flood the senses with notes of iodine, salty canvas, crushed sea shells, charred oak staves, black pepper, paprika and leather tobacco pouches. The second wave brings vanilla, figs and soft plump dates, marinated pear, freshly milled malt, dark sweet toffee and cracked walnuts. It’s smoky. It’s smouldering. It’s sensuous. Just close your eyes and inhale long and deep. This is aromatic awesomeness.
  • Palate – Wow! Waves of the sweetest, smoothest, warmest smokiest spirit that you have ever experienced flood onto the palate like the atlantic surf on Saligo Bay. It is potent, focused and the flavours explode brilliantly onto the palate. Full of depth and complexity, the smokey sweetness of the barley contrasts beautifully with the marine freshness of the spirit and the richness of toffee and vanilla. The complexity is enhanced further with a citrus twist and then mellow oak tempers the fire. Once the taste buds adjust to what is happening, they rejoice in the company and pleasure of this young Celt.
  • Finish – It’s long and heart-warming, arousing feelings of pride and passion. It brings courage and strength, honesty and faith to your very soul.
  • Mood – It cries “freedom”. You are in a good place and you envy no man. You feel alive and ready for whatever lies ahead, knowing that the true spirit of Islay is with you.

Here’s what others say:

Canadian stash

Canadian stash

You can also find Whisky Lady in India on:

4 thoughts on “Bruichladdich Port-Charlotte Scottish Barley 50%

  1. Lovely to read your thoughts on this dram! I got given a bottle along with some Scottish salmon as a Christmas present. I’ve yet to open the bottle but I’m looking forward to it. Sounds like a tasty tipple!

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Hello Carissa. Thanks for this – we really appreciate your interest. We should probably point out to your readers however that the whisky in your picture, which is a “Wee Laddie” of unpeated Bruichladdich Islay Barley, is not the same as the whisky in your review. You have kindly reviewed a heavily peated Port Charlotte distilled from Islay Barley. Don’t worry – we even confuse ourselves sometimes! Cheers – Carl Reavey

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hey Carl! Really appreciate your reaching out and will check in with my aunt n uncle who gave the sample labelled as PC Islay Barley vs the pic forwarded. Will suss out and correct. Much obliged and thanks again for the clarification. Cheers, Carissa


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