Belgian Owl, 4 year old, 46%

Price: $72.00 Issue: Winter 2010 Reviewer: Dave Broom

Distiller Etienne Bouillon and two partners, farmer Pierre Roberti and financier Luc Foubert established Belgian Owl in 2004 in the barley-growing region of Hesbay, pressing a 19th century Swiss ambulatory alembic into service. Bouillon studied with Jim McEwan at Bruichladdich, and The Belgian Owl shows something of the Laddie's master distiller's love of sweet spirit aged in first-fill American oak. Stir in some cream, sweet peach, guava, and mango and you have a lush palate. The youth is indicated by a little green almond, while there is a soft crunch of barley on the tongue. €46