At 5 years old, Ardbeg Wee Beastie is younger than our good classic Ardbeg TEN. Thus, it is to be expected that he is stronger and wilder than his big brother, the name suggests it. And so it is, though not to the strong degree that the age difference would lead one to expect.
Initially, intense pepper and sea salt can be perceived. This is then joined by sweet notes of pine resin and the lovely smoke of an open campfire. The latter at a too intense first whiff as if sitting in the middle of the wind. But in the pleasant phase, there is a nice little note of caramel in the background.
In the taste remains the impression of the sea with a round pinch of salt, as in the spray. To this is added an even more intense large surge of burning wood. I wish we hadn’t gotten on the wrong side of the Easter fire. Once this flavor is digested, there is some bitter chocolate and a nice pinch of hot pepper.
The Wee Beastie behaves as an Ardbeg should in the finish. It is and remains strong, long and warm, its finish is yeasty, full and salty. Nothing exciting, but the expectation is met.
This malt is not a major highlight of the Ardbeg family, but it is favorable. And so it is a pleasant addition at the lower end. Young, wild, smoky with nice pepper. And so I give it 79/100 points.