2005 Murray McDavid Benchmark Ledaig Diamond Rum Cask Finish 16 yo cask 1900201 57.4%

Both an unpeated and a strongly peated spirit are produced by Tobermory Distillery, with the latter being bottled under the distillery’s traditional name, Ledaig (pronounced lay-chack). This single malt spent its final years in a hand-selected rum cask from the Guyana-based Diamond Distillery.
Finished in a 1st Fill Diamond Rum barrel after being distilled in 2005 using a Bourbon Hogshead. Single Cask: #1900201, un-chillfiltered and natural in colour. One of just 263 bottles made available globally.

Appearance: Straw gold. A thin to medium beaded swirl mark quickly forms, along with many thin to medium legs. A not-too-viscous film coats the inside of the glass. After a short while some teardrops also form.

Nose: A lovely confectionary/fruity sweetness, with wisps of caramelised BBQ steak initially. Might be the power of suggestion but I get the influence of the rum cask sugars, tropical notes and vanilla. Caramel and rum & raisin ice cream appear next, a lovely layer of flavour.

Palate: OOh, that’s a great delivery! Sweet, buttery salted popcorn, grilled tropical fruits and that mellow sweet vanilla….mmmmmmmmm Some more spice-forward notes follow the initial sweetness in the form of black pepper, lemon pepper and gentle chilli. The ABV is bang on with this dram, the flavours aren’t overwhelmed but it’s got a nice full-on profile.

Finish: Medium in length. Subtle black pepper, vanilla and caramel. The tropical fruit notes are there briefly but superseded by dried fruits, steaky smokiness and citrus.

Overall: A banger of a dram. I really like Ledaig generally and this one’s no exception. Great aromas and flavours, all well balanced and with a great supporting ABV.

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