Organic Scottish Barley – Not Bruichladdich’s Finest Hour

In the last post, I touted the lovely Black Art from Bruichladdich, mentioning that for me, once you move away from the “regular Bruichladdich” and get into the special editions or the peated ones, the lactic notes disappear and they become palatable. This post, however, visits the dark side of the distillery, which is a shame, because this experiment could have led to an interesting discussion on terroir. All the barley used is organically grown on three farms (on the mainland) and if any experiment in terroir is relevant in whisky, it’s this local barley. Kilchoman’s 100% Islay and Bruichladdich’s Islay Barley are good examples of this trend using Islay grown barley.

Photo Credit:

Photo Credit:

Sadly, however, this expression is so highly lactic, that I was completely unable to pierce that note to be able to get to a discussion on organic barley or terrior.


Photo Credit:

Photo Credit:

Bruichladdich The Organic Scottish Barley – Travel Retail (50% ABV, NCF, NC)

Appearance: Light hay, very slow and thin legs.

Nose: Lactic slap of baby vomit, faint honey, toasted marshmallow, dusty books and cotton candy.

Palate: Chocolate, honey, fruity and some peppery spice.

Linger: Spicy with strong lactic notes, on the end of the long linger bitter citrus notes abound.



Your enjoyment from this dram is all a question of your lactic tolerance. If you don’t mind (or like?) the Bruichladdich lactic notes, you’ll probably find this dram to be quite nice and complex. Even I, who have a hard time with the lactic notes, found the complexity beyond it, as evidenced in my notes. Should you get it? If you like the lactic style, sure!

I wish to thank OBO for the dram 🙂

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