Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2010

Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2010 Coull, Rockside, Sunderland, Kentraw, Claggan, Dunlossit, Starchmill, Mulindry, Cruach and Island Farms

This is a thought provoking, uber-provenance single malt whisky distilled from barley grown by eight family farms on our remote Scottish island home. Barley varieties Optic and Oxbridge were planted across the breadth of the island in 2009. We distilled their spirit early in 2010 and it ran clean, rich and malty, before being filled into ex-Bourbon and French wine casks and matured in our warehouses by Loch Indaal.

This is a thought provoking, uber- provenance single malt whisky


It was created with spirit trickle-distilled from barley grown in the fields of our remote Scottish island home. For us it is the land incarnate, our passionate belief in the power of barley made manifest.

Land and dram united.

Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2010 is:

— The 5th release in our ongoing Islay Barley exploration series
— Multi-farm single vintage
— Unpeated Islay single malt Scotch whisky
— Optic and Oxbridge barley varieties
— 50% ABV for maximum mouthfeel
— A majority of first fill Bourbon with some ex-Rivesaltes, Jurançon and Banyuls cask maturation
— Matured entirely on Islay
— Bottled at the distillery using Islay spring water
— Non-chill filtered
— Colouring free

Islay Barley 2010 - Bruichladdich Still

Every year the crop of islay grown barley is distilled separately.


In 2009 we consolidated the harvests of no fewer than eight farmers from the whole breadth of Islay. This enabled the early 2010 distillation of this new unpeated Bruichladdich, perhaps the first that we can proudly call a ‘regional Islay’ release.

The spirit ran clean, rich and malty, the majority being housed in first-fill Bourbon, with a suite of exotic French wine casks from Rivesaltes, Jurancon and Banyuls adding additional complexity and depth. All were stored full-term in our warehouses by Loch Indaal during maturation.

Islay Barley
2010

Tasting Notes


Character – The characters of the people of Islay, just like the malting barley grown here for Bruichladdich, are shaped by this place we love and call home. As distillers our identity is expressed with honesty and pride through this exceptional series of Islay grown barley releases that mean so much to us. The great dedication and passion of those who raise the crop, despite the risks and hardships they encounter each year, is matched by the pride we take in distilling their barley. We feel it shares our islay DNA.

Colour – Soft winter sun shimmering on a golden sandy beach.

Nose – The floral nature of Bruichladdich spirit is immediately to the fore, its purity and openness at once refreshing and stimulating. A sea breeze filled with a delicate floral bouquet drifts through before the beauty of young, clean Bruichladdich emerges with crisp sweet apple, ripe gooseberry and peach. The malted barley brings brown sugar and toffee, while aromas from the toasted oak are calm and restrained as a backdrop, allowing the malt and spirit to shine. Butterscotch, spice and creamy vanilla custard give more clues to the tremendous quality of the casks we filled with this precious spirit.

Palate – The mouthfeel, the viscosity, is a delight. Trickle distillation is a slow and simple technique but fundamental to producing such quality. The texture is muscular and rich, the natural oils coaxed gently from the grain temper the spice to allow its character, its young, clean, fresh charm to flourish.
Appreciate the expertise of the maltster, the cooper’s craft and the experience and patience of the distillers. Consider the effort and expertise involved and the provenance and heritage of this exceptional spirit on the palate and you will be rewarded with a sensory experience rarely encountered.

Finish – This expression from our distillery, our land, our terroir, will leave you in no doubt as to its island of origin. The finish is ozone fresh, with zesty lemon and that note of windswept salt that can only have come from maturation by our Atlantic shoreline.

Mood – Confident in its identity, its history and heritage, this is another self-assured and distinctive dram in the Islay Barley series as we establish the identity of our island-grown grain and explore its potential.

Islay Barley 2010 - spirit

“Each harvest generates an individual whisky vintage.”


These uber-provenance single malts are very different to bland, industrially homogenised brands.

That our whiskies subtly vary from vintage to vintage is hardly surprising. The barley varieties, the farms, the soils, the weather conditions, the hand-crafted nature of their distillation and the individual character of the casks they are matured in all contribute to delicate change.

It is possible to hide these subtle nuances. It is possible to strip out the natural oils, negatively affecting the texture but allowing the spirit to be bottled below 46% without a haze forming. Caramel food colouring could then be added to homogenise the appearance from batch to batch, but also darkening the whisky, giving a false impression of age.

At Bruichladdich, we never do this. We bottle at 50% or above and we never chill-filter or add artificial colour to our whiskies.

Islay Barley 2010 - spirit in glass

WE BELIEVE TERROIR MATTERS.


Islay is a land of family farms and the men and women who till the soil here have shouldered significant risks to join us on an inspirational journey of sensory exploration. This is a spirit that captures their work and speaks of the earth.

BARLEY IS THE MOST FLAVOUR COMPLEX CEREAL IN THE WORLD.


No mere commodity, its provenance matters.

Other influences on the flavour profile of our whiskies include barley variety, cask origin and time while for over a decade more and more of Islay’s farmers have joined us as we explore the impact of our island’s terroir.

What is the effect of soil, subsoil, exposure, orientation, climate and micro-climate on our barley harvest?

BARLEY IS THE MOST FLAVOUR COMPLEX CEREAL IN THE WORLD.


No mere commodity, its provenance matters.

Other influences on the flavour profile of our whiskies include barley variety, cask origin and time while for over a decade more and more of Islay’s farmers have joined us as we explore the impact of our island’s terroir.

What is the effect of soil, subsoil, exposure, orientation, climate and micro-climate on our barley harvest?

Growing malting barley on Islay for Bruichladdich can be challenging.


In 2009, a warm and reasonably dry spring helped with the sowing but strong growth through a gentle June and July was threatened by relentless August rain. Miraculously, the clouds then rolled away and a sun-soaked September allowed the combines to roll.

The combination of erce weather and spectacular wildlife can seriously impact the yield of grain from the elds.

Voracious focks of wild geese and marauding herds of red deer inevitably take their toll and the farmers can face many anxious days before the harvest comes home.

Flocks of wild greylag geese that gather on Islay in the late summer inflict the most damage. The effects can be heartbreaking. The geese completely destroyed this beautiful field of grain on the eastern edge of Loch Indaal.

Temperature Variation
MONTHLY AVERAGE TEMPERATURE ON ISLAY.
2008 & 2009 HARVESTS.
20082009

Do these significant annual variations have an impact on the character of the grain?

Hunter Jackson , Cruach Farm, Bowmore

55°44’38.9”N / 6°15’37.2”W

Growing for Bruichladdich since 2007

Hunter Jackson provides our farming partners with both seed and expertise from his agricultural supply business in Bowmore. In addition to planting barley for Bruichladdich, Hunter also raises pedigree Dorset sheep and ‘mules’ on his smallholding at Cruach, near the centre of the island.

Andrew Jones

ANDREW JONES, COULL FARM, KILCHOMAN

55°47’37.5″N 6°28’06.7″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2007

Andrew Jones lives and works with father Donald and mother Pat at rugged Coull out on the wild west coast of the Rhinns of Islay. Traditionally raising livestock, the Jones family personify the ‘can do’ attitude of our farming partners, facing down the risks and sowing malting barley for this unique Scotch whisky.

Hunter Jackson , Cruach Farm, Bowmore

55°44’38.9”N / 6°15’37.2”W

Growing for Bruichladdich since 2007

Hunter Jackson provides our farming partners with both seed and expertise from his agricultural supply business in Bowmore. In addition to planting barley for Bruichladdich, Hunter also raises pedigree Dorset sheep and ‘mules’ on his smallholding at Cruach, near the centre of the island.

ANDREW JONES, COULL FARM, KILCHOMAN

55°47’37.5″N 6°28’06.7″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2007

Andrew Jones lives and works with father Donald and mother Pat at rugged Coull out on the wild west coast of the Rhinns of Islay. Traditionally raising livestock, the Jones family personify the ‘can do’ attitude of our farming partners, facing down the risks and sowing malting barley for this unique Scotch whisky.

Raymond Fletcher

RAYMOND FLETCHER, DUNLOSSIT ESTATE, KEILLS

55°50’24.2″N 6°07’44.0″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2007

Raymond Fletcher of Keills has grown and harvested malting barley from various elds on Dunlossit Estate since the retirement of Jim Logan. Jim was another early Bruichladdich pioneer, somehow raising a crop from the desolate place known as ‘Headland of the Gallows’ for our 2006 Islay Barley release.

IAN MCKERRELL, ISLAND FARM, BOWMORE

55°43’52.6″N 6°17’11.4″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2007

Ian McKerrell of Island Farm has been sowing malting barley for Bruichladdich into a number of centrally located elds since 2007. A well kent Ileach, Ian always seems to be on the move, delivering dairy produce, raising his beef cattle, or helping with the annual Islay and Royal Highland agricultural shows.

IAN MCKERRELL, ISLAND FARM, BOWMORE

55°43’52.6″N 6°17’11.4″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2007

Ian McKerrell of Island Farm has been sowing malting barley for Bruichladdich into a number of centrally located elds since 2007. A well kent Ileach, Ian always seems to be on the move, delivering dairy produce, raising his beef cattle, or helping with the annual Islay and Royal Highland agricultural shows.

RAYMOND FLETCHER, DUNLOSSIT ESTATE, KEILLS

55°50’24.2″N 6°07’44.0″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2007

Raymond Fletcher of Keills has grown and harvested malting barley from various elds on Dunlossit Estate since the retirement of Jim Logan. Jim was another early Bruichladdich pioneer, somehow raising a crop from the desolate place known as ‘Headland of the Gallows’ for our 2006 Islay Barley release.

ALASTAIR TORRANCE, MULINDRY FARM, BRIDGEND

55°47’13.2″N 6°25’50.4″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2007

IAN TORRANCE, STARCHMILL FARM, BRIDGEND

55°45’53.0″N 6°12’27.0″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2007

Brothers Alastair and Ian Torrance grew up at Mulindry, the farm tenanted by their parents Ronald and Helen. Alastair retired from Mulindry to Gartloist Farm recently, where he raises Texel and Scottish Blackface sheep and cultivates barley for Bruichladdich. Ian retains the tenancy of Starchmill, also in the centre of the island, where he farms Limousin and British Blue cattle alongside his fields of barley for the distillery.

Mark French

MARK FRENCH, ROCKSIDE FARM, KILCHOMAN

55°47’13.2″N 6°25’50.4″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2006

Mark French and his wife Rohaise farmed Rockside on the Rhinns of Islay for many years before finally deciding to move to the mainland last year, to be closer to their grandchildren. In 2006, barley grown at the Ministers Field became our 2007 Bruichladdich Islay Barley single farm release.

RAYMOND STEWART, SUNDERLAND FARM, FORELAND ESTATE

55°47’43.4″N 6°23’43.5″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2004

Raymond Stewart manages the Macaire family’s Foreland Estate on the Rhinns of Islay, which includes Sunderland Farm. It was the late Richard Macaire who first rose to the challenge and agreed to sow malting barley for Bruichladdich back in 2004. Raymond chose a small field at Kentraw for the experiment and his harvest was to result in the first modern single malt whisky distilled entirely from Islay-grown barley.

RAYMOND STEWART, SUNDERLAND FARM, FORELAND ESTATE

55°47’43.4″N 6°23’43.5″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2004

Raymond Stewart manages the Macaire family’s Foreland Estate on the Rhinns of Islay, which includes Sunderland Farm. It was the late Richard Macaire who first rose to the challenge and agreed to sow malting barley for Bruichladdich back in 2004. Raymond chose a small field at Kentraw for the experiment and his harvest was to result in the first modern single malt whisky distilled entirely from Islay-grown barley.

MARK FRENCH, ROCKSIDE FARM, KILCHOMAN

55°47’13.2″N 6°25’50.4″W

GROWING FOR BRUICHLADDICH SINCE 2006

Mark French and his wife Rohaise farmed Rockside on the Rhinns of Islay for many years before finally deciding to move to the mainland last year, to be closer to their grandchildren. In 2006, barley grown at the Ministers Field became our 2007 Bruichladdich Islay Barley single farm release.

Bruichladdich Distillery
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