Peat's Beast Cask Strength Review

“The Beauty Within the Beast“

Country: Scotland
Region: Unknown (Possibly Speyside)
Brand: Peat's Beast 
Type: Single Malt Whisky 
Released by: Fox Fitzgerald Ltd, Hereford, UK 
Age: NAS 
ABV: 52.1% (Cask Strength)
Chill-Filtration: No
Whisky Review # 579
Buying Advice: 😐 
Negative if you're not into Peated Whisky. If you're a fan of young Islay Whisky, the Peat's Beast could be an interesting alternative.

Colour: Golden Hay/Chardonnay (Perhaps Lightly Artificially Coloured) 

Nose: Floral Peat, Wet Soccer Field, light Smoke, light Ashes, light Soot, light Plastic, Medicine, Yeast, slightly Burnt Buttered Toast, Toasted Cereals, Straw, Salted Peanuts, Vanilla, light Heather-Honey, Caramel, Orchard Fruit, Shell Fish or Fish on the BBQ, Lemon-Pepper, Cinnamon, Dried Herbs and hints of Dusty Road and Tobacco. There's a quite Young feel to the Noise and I would assume that 5-7 Year old whiskies were used for this Malt. The Alcohol is quite strong of course and it's not fully integrated. But it also doesn't interfere too much with the Nosing procedures. The Peat is strong but not in an aggressive way. With more cask time the Peat's Beast has certainly the potential to develop into a well-balanced whisky. It's good to give the Beast some time in the glass. This way the Fruity flavours are able to develop and after 20 minutes or so I found slightly Sour Apples and some Pineapple.   

Palate: Young and Strong with Earthy Peat, slightly Dirty Smoke, Soot, Ashes, Tar, Oak Char, Toasted Cereals, Caramel, Vanilla, Fish or Shell Fish on the BBQ, Salted Bacon, Sour Green Apples, Pineapple, Banana, Herbal Tea, Lemon, Licorice, Pepper, Cardamom, Cumin Gouda Cheese, Strong Black Espresso, Dark Chocolate, Cocoa Powder and Leather.    

Finish: Middle-Long, Bitter-Sweet, slightly Hot, Spicy and Dry towards the end. I find Toasted Cereals, Earthy Peat, slightly Dirty Smoke, Soot, Tar, Ashes, Herbal Tea, Cumin Gouda Cheese, Leather, Caramel, Sour Apples, Grapefruit, Bacon, Oak Char, Vanilla, Pepper, Ginger, Cardamom, Licorice, Strong Black Espresso and Dark Chocolate with a high Cocoa content.     

I added a little Water and on the Nose, the Peat and Smoke retreat to give more space to Floral - and Citrus Aromas. On the Palate, the Fruit develops better. It does make the Finish rather Short and Thin. You can add a few drops but please don't overdo it.

Rating: 84 

Nose: 21 - Taste: 21 - Finish: 21 - Overall: 21

General Remarks: The Peat Beast was a monster that roamed the peat bogs of Scotland hunting down the purest dirtiest peat. Or so the legend tells us at least. In 2011, Fox Fitzgerald released the first Peat Beast in its honour with an ABV of 46% and a peat level of 30-35 ppm. Packaging and Presentation are very nice and the Beast was drawn by Brazilian born artist Doug Alves. In 2014 the Cask Strength expression that I am reviewing today hit the market. It's a big secret where this Single Malt was distilled. As there is no reference to Islay on the packaging I will assume it was not produced there. The Peat Beast is not Chill-Filtered and matured in Ex-Bourbon casks. It is priced at an average 50 US Dollars (December 2016). More recently, a Peat's Beast Cask Strength PX cask Finish has been released by Fox Fitzgerald.

Drinking Experience Neat: Good despite its obvious Youth.

Drinking Experience on the Rocks: Good

Conclusion: First of all I would like to give kudos to Fox Fitzgerald for the nice Story, Presentation and Packaging of the Peat's Beast. The marketing part really deserves full marks. As for the whisky itself, it's certainly not bad if you are into peated whiskies. The Peat is strong of course but not in an aggressive way. The ABV is probably a tad too high for such a young Spirit. And here we come to the main issue. The Peat's Beast is a young whisky and it did not get time to fully take advantage of the wood contact. And that's a real pity because I believe that this Spirit would benefit tremendously from a longer maturation, especially in terms of balance. I would love to try a 12 Years Cask Strength version! Well, who knows what the future holds. Because there is certainly beauty within this beast. Finally, do I have an idea where this Single Malt was distilled? Honestly I don't have a clue. The only thing I can say is that the Peat's Beast reminded me of a more mature version of the BenRiach Birnie Moss that I reviewed earlier. But your guess is as good as mine! 

Jan van den Ende                                                                December 5, 2016

Could this be the home of the Beast?

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