Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2006

Bruichladdich Bere Barley
Picture: The Whisky Exchange

Bere Barley is an 8000-year-old barley variant. It probably ended up in Europe after a Viking invasion. Jim McEwan accepted the challenge to have the barley grown on Kynagarry Farm fields on Islay. Fields that hadn't been cultivated in the last 100 years. The result of all the hard work (Red deers were very keen on this 'exotic' treat – the Victorian mill wasn't that fond of it) was a chemical-free harvest. 

Identity Kit Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2006

  • Official bottling from Bruichladdich Distillery (Islay)
  • 6-year-old single malt Scotch whisky
  • Distilled in 2006, bottled 2012 
  • Alcohol: 50% ABV

Back to grandmother's kitchen 

Tasting notes 

Colour: The pale yellow does not only reveal his age. It's also a clin d'oeuil to its provenance: a barley field on a summer day's.

Nose: A lot of cereal and some citrus. Very clean and crisp and a little shy. But hey, who wasn't shy as a five-year-old toddler. Let it breathe for a while. Water serves you some muesli with dried fruits (bananas and coconut) and a baked apple with brown sugar

Taste: The primary ingredient – barley – is the centre of all things. Porridge with vanilla. Water sweetens the whisky. Kellogg's Frosties with golden syrup. Again some fresh citric notes. I'm thinking more of grapefruit instead of limes. The bitterness of the grapes evolves in a soft oak flavour.
Finish: Quite short, dry and crisp. A summer's appetizer.

Conclusion: Interesting is the least you could say of this youngster. It tells you its story very slowly. True to his name, Bere Barley serves you mostly cereal aromas. Definitely worth looking out for. An interesting dram for those on a budget. Less than € 50. But he's getting rare these days (only 7650 bottles available on Planet Earth). Update: Bruichladdich launched the 2nd edition in 2013.