“Ballechin” is the heavily peated version of Edradour and comes matured in a wide variety of wood types. The name originates from a fellow Perthshire farm distillery, which sadly closed its doors in 1927. Alfred Barnard, who catalogued all the distilleries in the UK in the 1880’s, made reference to having tasted a peated dram there. This new-age Ballechin is a whisky born out of experimentation. Launched in 2003, and with a whopping phenol content (a minimum 50 ppm), this is predominantly drawn from ex Bourbon casks with a generous top dressing of ex Oloroso Sherry to create added depth and greater complexity. It’s finished at 46%, without chill filtration, to retain the true cask character.Tasting note: The emphasis is on earthy peat rather than the maritime kind: Honey and toffee thread through the smoke, nuanced with old leather, smoked ham, cigar box, lucerne mulch, grain store and mint chocolate. Vibrant, fresh and juicy on entry building towards a deluge of sooty peat, chilie chocolate, dried herbs and late peppermint in the final stages. At the asking price, this is about everything you could want in a heavily peated dram. Look out Ardbeg 10! 46% Alc./Vol.