Whisky Focus - Big Peat 10 Year Old Commemorative Bottling Review

Big Peat 10 Year Old Commemorative Bottling

15th February 2019
Douglas Laing marks 10 years of its peaty Islay blended malt with a Big Peat 10 Year Old commemorative bottling.

Big Peat 10 Year OldBack in 2009 while attending 'Whisky Live Glasgow' I stopped by the Douglas Laing stand where Fred Laing poured me my first taste of his company's new Islay blended malt, Big Peat. I recall chatting with Fred at the time about the whisky and telling him how impressed I had been with Douglas Laing's already existing Clan Denny Islay blended malt whisky, a whisky which I think slipped under most whisky drinkers radar but with Big Peat not only was Douglas Laing offering a quality peaty Islay blended malt whisky but with DL's innovative branding and marketing it was always destined to get noticed and given its quality and pricing it was also destined to be a winner with peaty Islay whisky drinkers.

I have always thought if put together well a blended malt whisky has the potential of being just as good or even better than any malt whisky from a single distillery and Big Peat was, and still is, proof of that.

A decade on since Big Peat's inception, Douglas Laing, the independent Glasgow based family Scotch Whisky firm are marking Big Peat's 10th anniversary with the release of a commemorative Big Peat 10 Year Old Limited Edition bottling.

The listed component malts for the 10 year old limited edition have remained true to the original component malts listed for the Big Peat when it was launched back in 2009 which are predominantly Caol Ila, Ardbeg, Bowmore and a of course a small portion of Port Ellen.

Taking its inspiration from a vintage scrap book, the Big Peat 10 label features a collection of emblems, stamps and hand-drawn illustrations in honour of Big Peatís Islay home. A platinum foiled story book held within a heavyweight envelope accompanies each bottle, telling the legend of Big Peat and his Whisky adventures. Just like all Big Peat expressions the special 10 year old bottling is a marriage Single Malts distilled exclusively on Islay and proudly offered without colouring or chill-filtration. At a punchy 46% strength, the 10 Years Old Whisky is described as being "packed with sooty, smoky, leathery charm".

Fred Laing, Chairman at Douglas Laing and Big Peatís best pal, commented: "Back in 2009, I dreamt up a feisty Ileach fisherman who would later become Big Peat, a brand that would grow at an average of 29% year on year, and subsequently be joined by Scallywag, Timorous Beastie, Rock Oyster, The Epicurean and The Gauldrons to deliver what we so modestly designate our "Remarkable Regional Malts: The Ultimate Distillation of Scotlandís Malt Whisky Regions". Iím delighted to see Big Peat continue to grow and to see Ďhimí develop such a loyal band of followers around the world Ė this special bottling is a fitting tribute to him!"

Big Peat 10 Year Old is a limited release of 5100 bottles globally and is expected to retail at £65, it will soon be available from specialist online whisky retailers such as The Whisky Exchange and Master of Malt

Big Peat 10 Year Old Review

I would guess that the standard Big Peat expression which launched back in 2009 is a youthful peaty vatting of 5 to 8 year old single malts so it will be interesting to see if its vibrant peatiness has been tamed or rounded off any with an extra few years in the cask. I haven't had the chance to taste it as yet so I cant comment on its quality but here is the official tasting note from Douglas Laing for you to consider.

Producer's Tasting Notes:

Nose: Peat smoke, damp earth and leaves with a peppery warmth.

Taste: Smoked barley and BBQ ash, a sea-salt tang balanced by a leathery sweetness.

Finish: Long with streaky bacon, tobacco, toasted marshmallows and charred wood.

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