ARDMORE 13 ans 2008 Caroni Finish Antipodes B.Bros
Colour: pale gold.
Nose: rich, powerful. On the first nose, Ardmore and Caroni engage in a Dantean battle. Once this duel is over, the Trinidad rum seems to gradually gain the upper hand, with petrol notes flooding the air. Then, suddenly, a very present oily, mineral salt-rich, gamey and intensely smoky (soot) peat takes over without warning. Further on, fresh fruits (pear, apple) definitively give Ardmore the edge.
Palate: clean, distinguished. Abundantly fruity (pineapple, Mirabelle plum), vanilla and far more peaty than implied by the nose, the attack is also delicately aniseedy and mentholated. The rustic and earthy mid-palate stages a dried out peat that has become more vegetal. The honeyed (acacia) end of the palate refreshes the taste buds with a variety of plant infusions (thyme, verbena, sage).
Finish: long, concentrated. Nomadic, the start of the finish heads to Mexico and its earthy, medicinal mezcals. With time, barley sugar spreads across the palate. Increasingly herbaceous (twig) and empyreumatic (chimney smoke), the end of the finish is at once deliciously vanilla and almost chocolatey. Ruling in favour of peat, the retro-nasal olfaction and empty glass stay in keeping with the palate. For a long time, however, the hint of tarmac that continues to linger plunges us again into the world of Caroni.