Ardbeg Spectacular to be released on Ardbeg Day 2024

Petra Milde |

The first Ardbeg whisky from port casks


As every year, Ardbeg Distillery presents a special edition of its heavily peated Islay whisky for Ardbeg Day. Ardbeg Spectacular is the name of the sigle malt whisky, whose packaging and advertising banner were deliberately designed in the grand style of a circus - after all, the flavours are as exciting as a circus premiere according to the press release.

Ardbeg matured in port casks for the first time

The Spectacular is indeed a first for Ardbeg, as this is the first time that the company has used whisky matured in former port casks. To round off and enrich the flavours, this was then married with a proportion of Ardbeg whisky from ex-bourbon casks.

Master blender Gillian Macdonald said: “Ardbeg Spectacular is a high-flying spirit, very befitting of Ardbeg Day. Its years in Bourbon and Port casks create a spectacle of flavours, the likes of which Ardbeggians will never have tasted before. We invite fans to roll up and feast their palates on its peculiar notes of mint chocolate, incense, lavender and smoked nuts, set off by a daring double act of salted caramel and tar. Like the finest performances in the circus ring, this is a whisky not to be missed.”

Ardbeg Spectacular will be released on 1 June 2024 with an RRP of £110, bottled un-chillfiltered and in natural colour at 46% ABV. That Saturday is the last day of the Feis Ile festival on Islay, traditionally the day on which the Ardbeg Distillery and Ardbeg Embassies invite to celebrate Ardbeg Day. This year it is announced to be a big "Ardbeg Day Circus" with tastings and adventure games. Members of the Ardbeg Committee will be offered an exclusive pre-purchase opportunity on 2 May 2024.

Tasting notes for the Ardbeg Spectacular

Colour: sunset orange.

Nose: fragrant and aromatic, notes of lavender, vetiver and incense. This is followed by deeper notes of leather, almond and wax. A touch of water and the scent becomes woody, smoky and minty.

Palate: salty which leads to an explosion of smoky flavours: eucalyptus, salted caramel, smoked pecans, wood smoke.

Finish: long, flavours of leather, caramel and a refreshing minty sensation.


Images: Moet Hennessy

Petra Milde is a freelance author of books and specialist writing about spirits and food. She has been supporting the editorial team since 2015 and creates informative and entertaining articles in the news section.

Besides her writing work, she moderates tastings and can be met at spirits fairs, both behind the stands and in front of them, looking for new products and interesting people to talk to.