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Ardbeg has been hailed as Distillery of the Year at the International Whisky Competition (IWC), a prestigious industry challenge. Judges also recognised Ardbeg Uigeadail with it winning two categories, Best Single Malt (Islay) and Best Peated Whisky, reinforcing the leading reputation of the Distillery, which is owned by The Glenmorangie Company.

It is the second year in a row that Ardbeg, one of the world’s smokiest, peatiest Islay malt whisky, has delighted the IWC. In 2017, it honoured the Distillery with its Whisky of the Year award. This year, as judges named Ardbeg Distillery of the Year, they commended the “exceptional craftsmanship” and “great team work” behind its untamed spirit, which has been distilled on Ardbeg’s remote Scottish island home for more than 200 years.

The IWC’s tasting panel singled out Ardbeg Uigeadail as Best Single Malt (Islay) and Best Peated Whisky. With a score of 96.8, out of a possible 100, it was lauded as a “gorgeous dram”, “incredibly well balanced, so complex, yet so smooth”. The other permanent expressions followed closely, with Ardbeg An Oa scoring 94.4 points, Ardbeg Corryvreckan 94.1 and Ardbeg Ten Years Old 91.3. Judges awarded 95.4 points to limited-edition bottling Ardbeg Grooves, released to mark this year’s Ardbeg Day, the annual, global celebration of all things Ardbeg.

Dr Bill Lumsden, Director of Distilling, Whisky Creation & Whisky Stocks for Ardbeg, said:

“We are truly honoured to be named IWC Distillery of the Year – and delighted that Ardbeg’s entire range came in for such high praise.”

Sylvain Allard, IWC managing director, said:

“That Ardbeg did so well, clearly shows the master skills of Dr Bill Lumsden and the Distillery’s whisky creation team at marrying the right casks together. While proving exceptional craftsmanship in the art of whisky-making, the Islay Distillery attracts a worldwide following. The Ardbeg Distillery tour is a must for everyone. The staff is what makes this Distillery exceptional, it’s great team work.”

Here are the full results for Ardbeg in the International Whisky Competition:

Ardbeg Uigeadail: Best Single Malt (Islay) and Best Peated Whisky

96.8 points

Judges described it as a ‘gorgeous dram’. ‘Incredibly well balanced, so complex, yet so smooth’. Named after the Distillery’s unique water source, it marries Ardbeg’s traditional deep, smoky notes with luscious, raisin tones of ex-sherry casks.

Ardbeg Grooves

95.4 points

A limited-edition bottling released to celebrate Ardbeg Day 2018, the annual, global celebration of all things Ardbeg. Made using casks which have been heavily charred to carve deep grooves in the wood, this is an intensely mellow whisky.

Ardbeg An Oa

94.4 points

Inspired by the Mull of Oa, the latest permanent expression from Ardbeg is smoky, sweet and singularly rounded.

Ardbeg Corryvreckan

94.1 points

The namesake of a treacherous whirlpool situated off Islay’s coast, it has swirling aromas and torrents of deep, peaty, peppery taste.

Ardbeg Ten Years Old

91.3 points

This expression is revered around the world as one of the smokiest, peatiest, most complex malt whiskies of them all.

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My name is Greg, and I’m a brand strategy consultant, writer, speaker, host and judge specialising in premium spirits. My mission is to experience, share and inspire with everything great about whisky, whiskey, gin, beer and fine dining through my writing, my brand building and my whisky tastings.

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