This past Sunday I was lucky enough to take part in a nation wide Twitter Tasting, #SuperNova2014, organized by Whisky Lassie. The sample was Ardbeg’s 2014 Supernova release and we were fortunate enough to have brand ambassador Ruaraidh MacIntyre (@roideroux) join us for the event to answer our questions. I really loved this sample! It’s everything you want from an Islay whisky, which of course means peat! It’s Ardbeg’s peatiest so it’s a good challenge to the nose and palate to pick out all the other aromas and flavours, but I personally never thought that the peat was too much. It’s certainly not a spicy dram, but falls more under earthy and floral type tones with a bit of ocean flare.

This pale yellow, straw coloured whisky was aged in bourbon and sherry casks. On the nose you of course get peat and smoke but I never found it overpowering. One participant perfectly described it:

I was getting a touch of granny smith apple and as the tasting went on the fruity aspect of the nose changed more to pear and anise. There was also a herbaceous quality to the smell, sort of like the drink Becherovka from the Czech Republic. The taste, oh the taste! It was so amazing. Just a perfect Sunday afternoon sipping drink. It’s definitely something you want to take your time with. The first sip is like a crashing ocean wave of flavour! It comes on very strong and then dimishes with a short finish, all the while having a smooth texture. But the more you sip the more the peat builds up on the palate and a metallic tasting finish starts to develop. There are flavours of dark coffee or dark raw chocolate, sea salt spray, some herbal or mineral qualities and pine. The following tweet sums things up nicely:

There are only about 10000 bottles worldwide with only 500 in Canada. So if you have about $200 to spend and enjoy peated whiskies I definitely recommend it. The drink would pair nicely with a long read, something that’s about an epic voyage. Once the first volume of Matt Fraction’s comic ODY-C is available from Image, it just might be the perfect pairing. ODY-C is a gender swapped version of Homer’s classic The Odyssey, but in space!



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