Ardbeg 1973 15 Years Sestante ABV 53.4%

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An independent bottling of 15 year old Ardbeg, distilled in 1973 when the onsite maltings were still in use. This was released in the late 1980s by Sestante.



Ardbeg 1973 15 Years Sestante (ABV 53.4%)

We’re having the ‘clear glass’ version aside for due comparison - we already assessed the latter and liked it a lot (92). Colour: gold. Nose: extremely unusual, close to the ‘clear glass’ as far as the profile is concerned but this one is more aromatic. Very big notes of rosemary and thyme, cumin, seawater, antiseptic, smoked tea, spearmint and chamomile, without much peat. Then very huge notes of crushed cloves, then white bread, then oysters and finally quite some menthol again… More oomph than the ‘clear glass’ version. I know, this is quite useless but with this crisis, these old bottling might well reappear at auctions and, above all, become affordable again. Mouth: exceptional attack, smooth and firm at the same time, wonderfully almondy and mentholated. Very, very old almond liqueur (old amaretto), genuine salted ‘farmy’ butter (not the tasteless crap that one can find in most supermarkets – at least in France), walnut liqueur, herbal liqueur (maybe something like Underberg, which I had only once but that I’ll remember forever!), honeydew… Oh well, all I know is that this is superb whisky, probably less peaty and more complex than more recent Ardbegs. Finish: long, more almondy and minty. It’s wonderful! Superb salty signature. Comments: the green glass is a tad more aromatic on the nose and more ‘evolved’ on the palate, whilst the clear glass version is straighter Ardbeg. Which one is the best? Hard to say… If you love Ardbeg, you may prefer the ‘clear glass’ version if you ever see both for the same prices. But just between us, very little people know that both versions just don’t taste the same. At all. SGP:455 (the clear glass is more like 356) - 92 points.


    Distillery Ardbeg
    Classification Single Malt Whisky
    Bottle No./Released -/-
    Vintage 1973
    Age 15
    Bottler Sestante
    Bottling Date 1988
    ABV/ Volume -/ 75cl
    Rating/SGP 92/-
    Cask Number -


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