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What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

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What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Alewishus » Wed Oct 17, 2007 10:35 pm

Smokehead's 49.95 plus 13% tax.
Ardbeg is 60.74, same 13% tax.
Now if Smokehead is young Ardbeg is it really a bargain?
The other factor being that me wife is keeping a close eye on what I'm spending on whiskey; the old 49.95, less than 50 trick may get past her...
Still waiting for the Laphroaig QC to hit the shelves where I'm at...

A.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Reggaeblues » Wed Oct 17, 2007 10:48 pm

I happen to be sipping an Ardbeg 10 as I find this thread. It never disappoints, if what you fancy is a robust, yet delicate Islay. Never had 'Smokehead' ( tho' some folks claim I am one!)so can't vouch for it. Though I did enjoy 'Peat Monster'. not so monstrous...really nice.

Re: the wife. Mine isn't a whisky lover. She likes a fine white wine, esp. Marlborough Sauvignon. what if your 'whisky budget' was to include the occasional bottle of her favourite tipple? Would that help matters?
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Alewishus » Wed Oct 17, 2007 11:47 pm

Peat Monster comes in at 59.99 plus tax so it would be comparable to the Ardbeg.
My wife seems to enjoy the wine that comes in those boxes, and has tons of the homemade from kits variety. I'll try suggesting that she pick something special up when I also suggest that I get some scotch - maybe my "sensitivety" will allow me to pull it off ?

A.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby K-Mile » Thu Oct 18, 2007 12:49 am

I also don't know the 'Smokehead', but the Ardbeg 10 is definitely worth every penny. Good luck on the :angel: to prevent her from going :evil:
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby parvus » Thu Oct 18, 2007 1:00 am

No contest - get the Ardbeg. Smokehead is at best an average dram, absolutely swimming with caramel, eugh!
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Mr Fjeld » Thu Oct 18, 2007 4:32 am

Maybe the Smokehead has changed through the batches? I found it quite good for being a mystery malt but I'm aware quite a few didn't.....
Ardbeg Ten is a classic - always good!
As an alternative may I suggest Caol Ila 12? A very good single malt, less smoky than the Ardbeg Ten but the character of the smoke is somewhat similar. It's also lovely oily like a Kalamata olive oil - and also peppery.
Some find the oiliness a little too much though.

Good luck!
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby les taylor » Thu Oct 18, 2007 8:41 am

Definetly the Ardbeg Ten. Smokehead is okay when you open the bottle. Imho it then fades away and you wonder why you are drinking it. Go for the Ardbeg.


:)
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Leither » Thu Oct 18, 2007 9:52 am

Yip Ardbeg Ten all the way - far better than Smokehead which we hear is 'rumoured' to be a young Ardbeg.

I have my doubts about the 'rumour'. Put it this way - why would Ardbeg release some young casks to Ian Macleod when they could get a better price bottling it themselves? I have heard the 'using up surplus stock without harming the brand name' but I don't buy that one.

I think that Smokehead is trying to be similar to Ardbeg but it really is a relatively poor imitation.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby zippy » Thu Oct 18, 2007 1:03 pm

I also heard Smokehead is a young Ardbeg - but that's just a rumour. If you want to be sure you are getting the real thing, go for the Ardbeg 10. I am not convinced of the advantages of really young whiskies anyway - it seems to be a lot of marketing spin. That said, the Smokehead is a decent dram for a decent price.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Alewishus » Thu Oct 18, 2007 4:40 pm

I guess I'll put out for the Ardbeg; finished a bottle about two weeks ago so this would be my third - yes I'm quite the newbie. I'm about half way through a bottle of Caol Ila 12, and once I hit the halfway mark I start getting really nervous about running completely out! Really like the Caol Ila 12, but where I'm from it's a tad more expensive than the Ardbeg. I've been rolling quarters all morning - thank you all for the advice.

A.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby K-Mile » Thu Oct 18, 2007 6:24 pm

Alewishus wrote:I guess I'll put out for the Ardbeg; finished a bottle about two weeks ago so this would be my third - yes I'm quite the newbie. I'm about half way through a bottle of Caol Ila 12, and once I hit the halfway mark I start getting really nervous about running completely out! Really like the Caol Ila 12, but where I'm from it's a tad more expensive than the Ardbeg. I've been rolling quarters all morning - thank you all for the advice.

A.

Good decision, let's hope your better half agrees or at least tolerates it :)

I think that's a great third dram. What was your first?
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Alewishus » Thu Oct 18, 2007 7:45 pm

First single that I bought was an Aberlour 10, which I really, really enjoyed.
One day the neighbor called me over for a taste of Lagavulin, and I was floored!
I've tried several singles since, though not nearly as many as I would like. The Ardbeg would be the third bottle of it's kind that I've bought; I've also gone through three bottles of Laphroaig but there are no stocks availible now, sigh....
Second bottle of Coal Ila - just can't seem to get off Islay.

A.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby BruceCrichton » Thu Oct 18, 2007 8:15 pm

Alewishus wrote:I guess I'll put out for the Ardbeg; finished a bottle about two weeks ago so this would be my third - yes I'm quite the newbie. I'm about half way through a bottle of Caol Ila 12, and once I hit the halfway mark I start getting really nervous about running completely out! Really like the Caol Ila 12, but where I'm from it's a tad more expensive than the Ardbeg. I've been rolling quarters all morning - thank you all for the advice.

A.


Ardbeg 10 beats Smokehead hands down. Much punchier and makes more sense.

Caol Ila 12 is good but CI is usually better from indie bottlers.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Paul A Jellis » Thu Oct 18, 2007 11:07 pm

Forgive me, but, isn't the answer, no matter what the question is . . . ARDBEG 10!
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby MrIntrepid » Fri Oct 19, 2007 9:14 am

Hi Alewishus

I had a smokehead last night at a tasting evening - it is definitely inferior to an Ardbeg 10 yo - the Ardbeg is far more complex and interesting - to me the smokehead may well be a young Ardbeg it has the same type of peatiness and fish market aroma but lacks depth.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Deactivated Member » Fri Oct 26, 2007 9:39 am

I agree with the consensus on here - Ardbeg 10!!!

The smokehead is powerful in taste, but it doesn't have the finesse or depth of flavours that one is treated to with the Ardbeg.

I used the Smokehead in a couple of tastings late last year and the general opinion was "average, but I wouldn't want to buy one"
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby pmullin » Fri Oct 26, 2007 10:34 pm

Ardbeg 10 most definitely.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby Reggaeblues » Sat Oct 27, 2007 12:44 am

...and if you ever come accross a bottle of Ardbeg "Almost There" grab itt!!

Ardbeg on steroids with extra sweetness. sipping the last of one as i write...

Glad you made the right choice BTW!!
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby upright » Fri Apr 03, 2009 12:13 pm

Paul A Jellis wrote:Forgive me, but, isn't the answer, no matter what the question is . . . ARDBEG 10!

In about a 1000 years this quote will still be on this forum. Well done.
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Re: What should I do - Ardbeg 10 vs Smokehead

Postby The Third Dram » Fri Apr 03, 2009 12:59 pm

Alewishus wrote:Second bottle of Coal Ila - just can't seem to get off Islay.

Then why not, after you've 'salted away' that 10YO Ardbeg, save up a little and spring for a bottle of Caol Ila Cask Strength (official bottling)?

Yet another great Islay pour! :thumbsup:
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