Bruichladdich The Classic Laddie Scottish Barley

Bruichladdich The Classic Laddie Scottish Barley (50%, OB, 2018)

  • Category: Islay single malt scotch whisky
  • Origin: Bruichladdich distillery
  • Bottling: OB
  • ABV: 50%
  • Cost: £39.95


What they say

Head Distiller Adam Hannett has individually selected casks to showcase the classic, floral and elegant Bruichladdich house style. Made from 100% Scottish barley, trickle distilled, then matured for its entire life by the shores of Loch Indaal in premium American oak, it is a testament to the quality of our ingredients.

The Classic Laddie Scottish Barley showcases the classic Laddie style, elegant and floral with a signature salt-citrus tang. However, a complex cask management system and our refusal to add artificial colour or chill-filter our whiskies means that each vatting is subtly different.

Official tasting notes:

  • CHARACTER – Smooth as pebbles in a pool. It’s clean, fresh and lively with both the oak and the grain in perfect harmony.
  • COLOUR – Sunlight on fields of early summer barley.
  • NOSE – The bouquet is brilliant. Opening with barley sugar and a hint of mint before leading into the most wonderful notes of freshly cut wild flowers; buttercup, daisy, meadowsweet, myrtle, primrose and cherry blossom. The cleanliness of the spirit is remarkable. As the seconds tick by, more aromas rise from the glass, little zephyrs of spindrift and sea pinks reminding you that this spirit is matured exclusively by the sea. After some four or five minutes and with the addition of a little water, caramelised fruits drift onto the scene; lemon drops and honey, tangerine and tablet.
  • PALATE – The palate entry is so refined and refreshing, the sweet oak and the barley arriving together sending the taste buds into raptures. The fruits from distillation drift in on an atlantic breeze and pop on the tongue like champagne bubbles. A combination of ripe green fruit, brown sugar and sweet malt bring closure. A taste back in time, a realisation that not all single malts are equal and to achieve the absolute optimum, you must use barley that is made in Scotland. Make this one the benchmark for all  others you meet on your journey through the stills of Scotland.
  • FINISH – Unforgettable! Its best enjoyed in good company, you just don’t want the evening to end. It brings warmth to the heart and soul. The clock slows down and the cares of tomorrow disappear into the dawn.
  • MOOD – Conviviality! Relaxed, enjoying the spirit in the glass and the laughter from tales often told but never tired of hearing.

What I say

Door #16 of the Drinks by the dram Scotch Whisky Advent Calendar.

Their eponymous unpeated style from Bruichladdich is represented by the entry-level Classic Laddie Scottish Barley. Every batch is made from slightly different vattings which can be revealed at by inputting the bottle batch code to reveal the exact recipe of your bottle!

My tasting notes:

  • Appearance: Antique gold (8/20), strong, medium legs, rare medium tears.
  • Nose: Sweet and earthy, fruity apple, honey, pears in syrup, dry gristy cereal barley malt, playdough/plasticine or putty/linseed oil, a hint of salt, floral and sweet.
  • Taste: Sweet, dry malted barley, honey, syrup, fruity apple and grape, a gentle earthen peatiness creeps in, full-bodied, oaty flapjacks, oak wood, cinnamon and vanilla.
  • Finish: Medium, sweet, malty, pancakes with honey.


Mealy and sweet, this Laddie expression is full of the cereal barley it represents with a generous portion of sweet honey, I found myself picking up a hint of gentle earthy peat (not smoke) in here that reminded me so much of how peat pervades everything in Islay – including me after being there for a few days, their really is nowhere else quite like it and this had me longing to be back there soon!

Score 84/100

Available from Master of Malt and The Whisky Exchange

Don’t take my word for it:

The Whiskey Jug reviews the Classic Laddie

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Categories: Bruichladdich, Islay

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