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Ardbeg to release limited edition Ardbeg BizarreBQ - a whisky inspired by BBQ

A new Ardbeg will be released next month, and it's ideal for summer.

Published: March 21, 2023

Ardbeg is launching Ardbeg BizarreBQ – the Distillery’s first ever Limited-Edition barbecue-inspired whisky.

Cooked up by the experimental and eccentric mind of Ardbeg’s Director of Whisky Creation, Dr Bill Lumsden, the whisky, as the name suggests, captures and complements the flavours of smoky barbeque.

The flavour concept for the expression has been aided by the expertise of Christian Stevenson (AKA DJ BBQ), resulting in an Ardbeg that packs a meaty, peaty punch.

Like grilling, distilling shares a key element when it comes to the creation of flavour – fire.

Casks used in Ardbeg BizarreBBQ

Using an experimental cask toasting process, the recipe for Ardbeg BizarreBQ is made up of double-charred oak casks, Pedro Ximénez sherry casks and the distillery’s unique BBQ casks that have been extra-charred on an old-fashioned brazier.

This cask combination comes together to imbue a sweet, tangy and smoky flavour that’s perfectly suited to barbecuing.

Bottled at 50.9% ABV, this Limited-Edition whisky has been inspired by the Islay Distillery’s ongoing collaboration with DJ BBQ, which began in 2020.

Fuelled by a shared obsession for smoke and its rich flavour possibilities, Dr Bill and DJ BBQ have been on a mission to create a new Single Malt that complements both whisky-making and barbequing.

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Ardbeg is renowned for its smoky taste, and so the new expression also marks the next phase of the distillery’s journey to uncover new ways of experiencing and enjoying smoky flavours.

Dr Bill Lumsden, Ardbeg’s director of Whisky Creation, said of the new launch: “Ardbeg BizarreBQ is certainly a hare-brained idea, but with DJ BBQ’s help I was able to cook up something truly incredible.

"Puffs of charcoal and soot mingle with smoky wood and aromatic herbs and spices. The undeniable smell of bonfire and BBQ embers linger in the background.

"Deep, warming smoke follows in flame-grilled steak, chilli oil, cured leather and clove. If there’s one Ardbeg you want with you grill-side, it’s this one.”

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Ardbeg BizarreBQ

Christian Stevenson (DJ BBQ) added: “Barbeque lovers and Ardbeg lovers are one and the same – it’s all about the smoke – which is something Ardbeg BizarreBQ has in spades.

"I’ve been on a mission to create and perfect a variety of BBQ dishes and accompanying Ardbeg serves that honour the fundamental laws of smoke, wood and heat for some time.

"This new Limited-Edition Ardbeg takes this match made in heaven to the next level, and I can’t wait for BBQ and whisky fans to try it.”

Where to buy Ardbeg BizarreBQ

Fans can also head over to the Ardbeg website to watch the hijinks as they happened when DJ BBQ joined Dr Bill at Ardbeg Distillery on Islay to lend a hand in creating the new malt.

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Ardbeg BizarreBQ Limited Edition will be available initially from the Ardbeg Distillery Visitor Centre on Islay and in Germany from 3 April 2023 onwards, priced at £75.

It will launch in global markets later this year and in the UK in June, and will be available from Ardbeg Embassies, whisky specialists, online retailers and from the Distillery Visitor Centre.

Known for cake making, experimental jam recipes, Champagne, whisky and gin drinking (and the inability to cook Gnocchi), Rosalind is the Food and Drink Editor and whisky writer for The Scotsman, as well as hosting Scran, The Scotsman's food and drink podcast.

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