Ardbeg was the last whisky distillery that we visited on Islay in 2016, and I must admit, I went a bit over board on the photos, its a very photogenic place. Using malted barley sourced from the maltings at Port Ellen, Ardbeg claims to produce the peatiest whisky in Islay, so of course my husband really enjoyed his tastings…..he had mine as well.
Ardbeg lies solitary, in a small cove off the south coast of Islay. It was once a stage for illegal distillation, when smugglers took advantage of the remote location and exceptional conditions for whisky production. Eventually, excise men seized the original, illegitimate buildings from the smugglers and destroyed them. It was not until 1815 that a legal distillery was established and founded by John McDougall. Sitting nearby leviathan distilleries; Laphroaig and Lagavulin, Ardbeg has always produced a very sought-after single malt, despite its production scale being less than half that of its neighbours.