Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2008, Single Malt Scotch Whisky
700 ml, 50.0% abv, Scotland (ISLAY)
This is the third release of Bruichladdich Bere Barley – and the first to be distilled from grain harvested on Orkney. Bere is an ancient barley landrace. Discoveries of similar grains, in the Neolithic village of Skara Brae on Orkney, reach back to the dawn of Scottish agriculture and civilisation, more than 4,500 years ago. In spite of the cool Orkney climate, Bere grows fast. It has long straw, prone to brackling in strong winds, and produces desperately low yields – 50% less than a modern crop. The small, starch-rich grains have tested the mashmen, wreaking havoc with our precious Victorian machinery. This is spirit from another place, another time, a sensory journey to another age. It is probable that Bere produced the original ‘uisge-beatha’, the water of life – for hundreds of years it was used by enterprising Scottish distillers, producing both legal and illicit whisky.
This 2007 crop was grown on Orkney and supplied by the Agronomy Institute at Orkney College UHI working with the following local farmers: Duncan Cromarty at Richmond Villa on South Ronaldsay, Keith Hourston at Skelbister in Orphir and Magnus Spence from The Northfield on Burray.
Distilled in early 2008, at Bruichladdich Distillery on the Isle of Islay, this Bere barley has produced a single malt of quite singular character, ultimate originality and exceptional provenance.