Below is the original thread from the Spirit of Islay Forums discussing the infamous "Canadian" Uigeadail that won Whisky of the Year in 2009.

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Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

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Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by Lars Helge 03 Nov 2008, 09:49

But.....

Does anyone know anything about this Canadian-bottling at 52,3% ABV? The Glenmorangie Plc says (to a Norwegian who asked them) that the Uigeadail always bottles at 54,2% ABV, and that it has to be something wrong in the Jim Murray Whiskybible 2009.

I'm not shure who's wrong.....
Last edited by Lars Helge on 03 Nov 2008, 14:25, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by Lars Helge 03 Nov 2008, 12:33

Here is the mail from the Norwegian enthusiast:

Dear Sirs,

I congratulate on the nomination of Ardbeg Uigeadail to World Whisky of the Year.

I contacted you lately with a question regarding the distribution of Uigeadail and in particular about the 52.3% abv that Jim Murray has given a neat 97.5 points in the Whisky Bible 2009.

I got the reply that Jim Murray had stated the abv wrong in the Whisky Bible and that all batches of Uigeadail have been bottled at 54.2%.

Recently I read a post on the whiskymag forum which was allegedly written by Jim Murray himself. There he stated that the Uigeadail he gave 97.5 points was a release only obtainable in Canada. So I wonder, have there ever been special batches of Uigeadail that are only available in a single country, or is Mr. Murray wrong when he states that the Uigeadail he tasted was only available in Canada?


And I just got a copy from the answer:

Thank you for your e-mail.

We would like to assure you that there has not been any special bottlings of Uigeadail for Canada or any specific market.

This is an issue that has been discussed with Mr Murray, and he is aware of the administrative error.

Kind Regards
Laura
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by mr_fox 04 Nov 2008, 19:13

Ha! I got the same reply from the same woman! Laura McVicar, Development Brands, on 29/10/08.

Sadly I think my money's still on Jim rather than Laura. Looking forward to seeing a post from anyone in Canada on this subject....

I mean, he couldn't possibly have awarded WWotY to a non-existent Ardbeg ... could he?
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by Willie JJ 04 Nov 2008, 19:47

mr_fox wrote:I mean, he couldn't possibly have awarded WWotY to a non-existent Ardbeg ... could he?

Well that would be pretty embarassing after he assured us that it was simply the best whisky he had tried all year and that it stood head and shoulders above anything else.
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by WillieJJ 04 Nov 2008, 19:58

Just to be clear, this is exactly what he said about it over on the darkside:

Jim Murray wrote:The Ardbeg got World Whisky of the Year, certainly. But it was from a direction I had not for one moment expected. This particular brand of Ardbeg had not historically been among my favourites. So I was rendered almost speechless when I happened across it in Vancouver earlier in the year. Sadly, it is a bottling available only in Canada. And the reason it got World Whisky of the Year was not because it was Ardbeg (Willie!!). But because of the 1,227 new whiskies I tasted this year I simply could not find one that was better.


Now if it does turn out to be the same stuff that he describes as not among his favourites ...
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by Par 05 Nov 2008, 19:11

Certainly not very surprising to see Jim Murray awarding whisky of the year accolades to an Ardbeg. Then again, if he has made a mistake as is implied, this would indeed be most embarrassing for him - which is why it would border on the unlikely, I'd say. Big corps have been wrong before...

/ Par
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by lohssanami 06 Nov 2008, 07:07

Well...last I checked, all of my Uigeadail's are 54.2%, but the 2008 JM Bible says the Uigeadail is 54.1%. The Very Young is 58.3%, but it is 58.9% in the 2008. I'm sure there are explanations, whether typos or variations in samples, but it makes this anomaly all the more confusing.
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by IslayonSpey 07 Nov 2008, 16:09

lohssanami wrote:Well...last I checked, all of my Uigeadail's are 54.2%, but the 2008 JM Bible says the Uigeadail is 54.1%. The Very Young is 58.3%, but it is 58.9% in the 2008. I'm sure there are explanations, whether typos or variations in samples, but it makes this anomaly all the more confusing.


Hi lohssanami,
There there probably a confusion between the AVY (for discussion @ 58.9%) and AVY Committee approved @ 58.3%). All my Uigys are 54.2%.
Slainte Rene

PS: Well done Uigeadail and well deserved too!! What more is there to say about Ardbeg . . . the 10yo Best Malt in 2008 and Uigeadail Best Malt in 2009 !! May to continue . . .
Ardbeg 4 EVER and EVER etc. etc. etc.
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by Gordon 12 Nov 2008, 06:47

I've tried several of the Oogies and to be honest it's not one of my Favourite Ardbegs , personally i think the Renaissance is a far superior whisky and is my favourite release of the year (as will shortly be announced in the insignificant SOI awards....) . But hey what do i know !
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by peatjunkie 13 Nov 2008, 11:40

Does Jim Murray gets sponsoring in any way.I mean the DL 702 bottles is a good whisky but not the best Ardbeg ever bottled.The Uigeadail is a good whisky but not the best of my year.
He has had a lot of typos in the past,is this negligence or is he in a hurry to get his next whiskybible in the shops.
I do not buy them anymore,I go for my own taste and it never misleades me.

Geert's rule
You try it,you like it,you buy it

No offence,but if I try my best whisky of the year I write down the excact details.So I can find the exact bottling in the shop.

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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by Davin_de_K 16 Nov 2008, 03:30

mr_fox wrote:Ha! I got the same reply from the same woman! Laura McVicar, Development Brands, on 29/10/08.

Sadly I think my money's still on Jim rather than Laura. Looking forward to seeing a post from anyone in Canada on this subject....

I mean, he couldn't possibly have awarded WWotY to a non-existent Ardbeg ... could he?


I live in Ontario, the largest malt market in Canada. The Oogie is not available here at all. Vancouver is in British Columbia, a five day drive from here. It is a small market and it's highly doubtful Ardbeg would make a special Oogie for them, but just to be sure I checked the BC Liquors web-site. They have the standard Oogie at 54.2% available, but no special edition Oogie of any kind. It's the government; everything they have in stock, or have had recently is listed.

In Jim's defense, everyone makes mistakes now and then, and besides Vancouver is such a wonderful place everything tastes better there!

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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by Willie JJ 16 Nov 2008, 13:25

Davin I entirely agree with your point. Things do taste different/better/worse according to the circumstances. They do for me anyway. But then I've never claimed to be able to give things the same score every time. :Tasting
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by Gordon 16 Nov 2008, 13:56

So really we need to know what batch it was ? L7 , L8 ?
As i've said i'm not a huge fan of the Oogie but i have noticed a difference in the batches of the ANB , the 2008 is Stella where as the 2006 is good , never had the 2007 but have been told it's worse than the 2006 .
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by mr_fox 16 Nov 2008, 19:35

Indeed. I was hoping JM would post again over on the darkside, but no show. I agree everyone makes mistakes but I'd really like to try something JM gives 97.5, just for the record. If it was a specific batch of uig then he could let the fans know.

Gordon - isnt the ANB all distillate from 1990 which has aged between bottlings, whereas Oog is a blend of whatever casks Ardbeg need to make a consistent product?
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Re: Ardbeg Uigeadail 2009 World whisky of the Year

by Gordon 16 Nov 2008, 19:55

Hi mr_fox ,
Aye your correct about the ANB , not too sure about what goes into the Oogie except that the first bottling was done with 1970's sherry cask/s . I think they used younger sherried stuff later , never really paid any attention to it as i said it wasn't one of my Favs .
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