Ledaig - Scotland's Most Underappreciated Malt
On our recent trip to Scotland, David OG and I tasted a sherry barrel of Ledaig that we thought people might go crazy for. Peaty, smoky, musty, with earthy splendor and the rich, chewiness that we love about some other sherry-aged malts. Plus, it was cheap! "This is a no-brainer!" we said to each other. Then we remembered one very important fact - it's Ledaig.
No one even knows how to say Ledaig, let alone drink it. I'll never forget calling it "Le-chig" in front of Stewart Laing, only to have him correct me and say it's pronounced "Le- dayge." "No one in Scotland calls it 'Le-chig' he said, so don't call it that in front of another Scotsman," he told us. That was until his brother came into the room and said, "Oh, that's a great barrel of 'Le-chig.'" We couldn't help but to roar with laughter. "Everyone calls it Le-chig" said the other Laing, much to the chagrin of his brother. Tasting with the Laing brothers, we encountered yet another great example of Tobermorey's peated malt, but again we knew that Ledaig just wasn't a real mover.
Why is no one drinking Ledaig, I wonder? It's peated, inexpensive, tasty, and it caters to all the Islay drinkers out there. Looking at our internal numbers, Ledaig ranks as the absolute worst selling single malt we carry! I think that's crazy because it's definitely not the worst tasting. Is it a lack of knowledge? Is it a lack of interest? Even my endorsement of it seems to fall on deaf ears. We brought in a good amount of the young Murray McDavid sherry cask and it's still sitting here like a dead duck in the water. Even my attempts to offer it at a closeout discount drew little enthusiasm.
What's the deal? Did I miss a Hansell post where he called it piss water?