Whisky Advocate

Review: Arran “The Peacock”

February 25th, 2010

Arran “The Peacock”, 1996 Vintage, 46%, £38
Complex, dynamic, and well-balanced. Honeyed vanilla, bright fruit (lemon, tangerine, nectarine), sultana, green grapes, and banana bread, peppered with ginger and subtle, gripping grape skin. Great mouth-feel (from the oak), which adds another dimension. That’s what 46% and no chill filtering will do for a whisky. One of the better Arran whiskies I’ve tasted. (Released in 2009. Sadly not available in the U.S., but worth finding!)

Advanced Malt Advocate magazine rating: 87

17 Responses to “Review: Arran “The Peacock””

  1. two-bit cowboy says:

    Nice review. I hope their 14 year old rates at least this high when we get it later this year.

  2. brian mac gregor says:

    I first fell in love in Isle of Aaran when Murray Mc David released a 1996 vintage two years ago and found it to be a remarkable malt. I am not sure if this would be a reasonable substitute for the peacock but is worth pursuing none the less,

  3. Chef! says:


    I’m glad to see this review and hope to see more readily available Arran reviews in the future, especially the bourbon and sherry versions. Arran’s regular 10yo unchillfiltered (46%) has become a mainstay in my inventory because it’s so inviting when I’m in the mood for something lighter. Marshmallows, light citrus, butter, cake, lemon, dry pepperine… but it’s that thick oily viscosity that gets me every time!

  4. Red_Arremer says:

    Sounds very nice. I know what you mean about banana bread notes– when I’ve gotten those I’ve called them vannana (after the yogurt flavor that combines vanilla and bannana).

    Any idea about production specifics– cask types, ages of whisky in the blend, ets.?

    • Henry H. says:

      R_A, the Royal Mile website says the Peacock is made up of 13 bourbon barrels and 7 sherry hogsheads. Distilled in 1996 and 12 y.o. If only we could find it in the States. The Arran 10 y.o. is a favorite (a shout out to Chef! for the spot-on tasting notes above; I’d add my grandmother’s scratch biscuits), so I’m eager to try the Peacock, the 12 y.o., the 100 proof, the Single Bourbon Cask, the Single Sherry Cask… Alas, their bottlings seem to be limited, and U.S. distribution scant, except for the 10.

  5. B.J. Reed says:

    Another one I have to hunt for!!

  6. Seth Nadel says:

    I always found Arran to be a little young for my taste, but it’s nice to see they are improving their whisky

  7. HJK says:

    Arran is a great lil distillary! If you are lucky enough to see Arran at a show, try their clean, uncut 10yo vs a bourbon and sherry cask finish. This is a great way to see how the barrel can affect the taste to the whiskey.

  8. Alex says:

    The 10 yo is quite good – much improvement over the NAS.

  9. Jason says:

    Thanks John, I’ve been looking at picking up a couple of bottles of this (I’m in Canada and can get it here) – but it’s been on the bubble – I’ll definitely make the effort to grab some while it’s in stock. Thanks.

    • vincent says:

      Hello Jason,

      If you use Facebook, look for Wisky Exchange Canada in the groups section. You will maybe find interesting info. on what is sold in Canada.

      take care

  10. Steffen Bräuner says:

    It’s no secret I am a huge fan of this bottling. It’s my favourite Arran. The Bourbon and Sherry casks works together excellent. Not disguising each other, both very clear to detect and working very well together- At one time you can taste the vanilla from the bourbon casks and the dried fruits from the sherry casks. That’s complexity right in your face !!. I’d rate this bottle 91

    I have to say I also like the “new” 12yr OB (soon to be replaced by a 14yr). I also had some very good single casks. 1 bourbon and 1 sherry,, sorry can’t remember the details, but it was a year ago I tried those.

    Arran is not always good. I wish they stayed away from all that terrible wine finish sh*te. One of the worst whiskies I ever tried was the Arran Champagne finish. Yuk!

    It’s a fun distillery to grow up with. I remember buying their 1st-ish release in 1999 or so. Utter crap and undrinkable. But as the years on the bottles grows bigger the quality has slow but steadily improved.

    Next month Icons of Arran no. 2 should be out, I hope it has been worth the wait


  11. […] Hansell has three new scotch reviews up this week: Arran Peacock, Smokehead, and a single post on Glen Grant 10 and Glen Grant […]

  12. Oiler_Kiwi99 aka Erik Burgess says:

    Looking forward to attending the Arran Distillery’s 15th Birthday celebration on the 3rd July. Should be a greatv day out!

  13. Steffen Bräuner says:

    The follow up has been leaked
    The Rowan Tree
    read more here :

  14. […]  But, I hear that the distillery is producing some very worthy malts as well, such as the Peacock expression.  Skip this, try […]

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