In 2000 Murray McDavid bought Bruichladdich for £6.500.000 (from Jim Beam, current owners of Bowmore and Laphroaig). After acquiring the distillery guess what was the first distillate made? Yes! Port Charlotte, not the unpeated Bruichladdich itself. The guys behind Murray McDavid are no fools. We all know Mark and Jim to be very shrewd guys. So the first stuff they wanted to make with their new distillery was peated Whisky. On the 29th of May 2001, the first Port Charlotte was made. The first Bruichladdich under new ownership was somewhat later distilled in July. (2001 which was also the year the first newly bottled Bruichladdich was released; the 10yo I just reviewed, the 15yo and the 20yo). Finally on the 23rd of October 2002 the first Octomore was distilled.
Color: Pale gold.
Nose: Mild, fatty vegetal peat, with butter and vanilla, pepper and salt. It smells like lavas was one of the plants that makes up the peat. Quite soft and unobtrusive. Some smoke and a tiny hint of burnt plastic and traces of soap. Sappy licorice twig. Wood lying around in the forest. Fresh (air) and un-complex. Dry kippers with hints of tar. Dusty vanilla and some paper. Nice to smell. The nose is worth the price of admission.
Taste: Sweet and peat. Sugar water with slightly bitter peat. Sweet licorice and black and white powder (yes, licorice again). Slightly warming. Licorice and licorice twig. Very tasty (the sweetness helps it along), but not very complex, but who cares when it’s so drinkable. Reduced, brooding peat that resembles coffee a bit. After a decent body, comes alas a sort of weak finish. A finish full of paper, barley, hints of soap and sweet licorice, but I guess we can blame its youth for that.
Lots of young Whisky is noticeable in An Turas Mor, but it shows a lot of potential though. This will become a great peated Islay Whisky when it becomes of age. I feel that Port Charlotte is a sweet Whisky that can be high on aroma, but struggles a bit with its length when it’s young. Highly drinkable, likeable and definitely worth its money. Get it, it’s not as expensive as the PC’s.