Whisky Magazine Issue 107
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As whisky launches go, it is probably fair to say that the team behind Ardbeg Galileo were reaching for the stars...
As whisky launches go, it is probably fair to say that the team behind Ardbeg Galileo were reaching for the stars when they spirited an assembled team of drinks writers and bloggers aboard a specially adapted train carriage to an unknown and supposedly outer-worldly destination… which turned out to be the National Space Centre, located in the very-much-down-to-earth city of Leicester.
Galileo, Ardbeg's newest release has been hotly anticipated by fans of the Islay distillery and the noise around the whisky, a 12 Years Old vintage release from 1999, was already creating a significant buzz amongst the online whisky community who were speculating months in advance as to the whisky's formulation. The limited release bottling follows on from last year's Alligator and is a vatting of first and second fill Bourbon casks alongside several casks of spirit matured in Sicilian marsala wine barrels, part of whisky creator Dr Bill Lumsden's many experiments into using unusual cask types.
The release ties in with the distillery's wider experiment to test micro-organic compounds drawn from the distillery's production on Islay. Last year, US space research company NanoRacks invited Ardbeg to take part in a maturation experiment between normal gravity on Earth and micro-gravity which is taking place in the International Space Station. Some phials of liquid made their way into space via a Soyuz rocket and the effects of this highly unusual gravitational maturation experiment will be compar...