Six peated Scotch whiskies ideal for someone looking for a smoky dram

Are you keen to start trying peated whiskies?
-Credit: (Image: Getty Images)


If you're a fan of whisky and are keen to take a further step into the world of Scotland's national drink and explore new flavours, then picking out a peated (or smoky) Scotch could be your next adventure.

Big name brands like Ardbeg, Lagavulin and Laphroaig may sound tempting but they are robust whiskies, which can often seem a bit intimidating if you're not familiar with this style.

To help find the right dram for you, we've selected six, let's say, more approachable, peated whiskies for you to sample first.

Cù Bòcan Signature

(Distillery: Tomatin, Region: Highlands)

Cù Bòcan Signature
Cù Bòcan Signature -Credit:Whisky Exchange

It might be named after the mythical 'ghost dog' that supposedly haunted the village of Tomatin for hundreds of years, but there's certainly nothing for whisky newcomers to fear about this delightfully smooth peated single malt.

Matured in a mix of ex-bourbon, ex-sherry and virgin oak casks, it's light and very creamy with just a little touch of smoke.

Ardmore Legacy

(Distillery: Ardmore, Region: Highlands)

Ardmore Legacy
The Ardmore Legacy -Credit:Whisky Exchange

Staying in the Highlands, the Legacy is a fantastic value introduction to peat from Ardmore. A blend of 80 per cent peated and 20 per cent unpeated malt, it delivers a full-bodied burst of flavour that includes that iconic peat smoke and a fair bit of spice.

Benromach 10 year old

(Distillery: Benromach, Region: Speyside)

Benromach 10.
Benromach 10 -Credit:Whisky Exchange

This Speyside distillery uses a very light, mainland peat to craft their whiskies. Imagine soft fruits soaked in vanilla and then a slight wisp of smoke just on the finish.

A fantastic all-rounder, it's a brilliant introduction to the peaty, smoky flavour.

Bowmore 15

(Distillery: Bowmore, Region: Islay)

Bowmore 15
Bowmore 15 -Credit:Whisky Exchange

For those in search of something a bit richer, the Bowmore 15 is the perfect dram from one of Scotland's most iconic distilleries.

Popular, indulgent and excellent value, the Bowmore's fusion of both bourbon and sherry casks results in an intriguing mix of toffee notes, sweet fruit and peat smoke that makes it incredibly moreish.

BenRiach The Smoky Ten

(Distillery: BenRiach, Region: Speyside)

The Smoky Ten from BenRiach
The Smoky Ten from BenRiach -Credit:Whisky Exchange

This is a return to the peaty whiskies that BenRiach has become renowned for over the past few years.

The Smoky Ten is a blend of bourbon and virgin-oak casks, and Jamaican-rum casks, creating a perfect balance between sweetness and, as the name would suggest, smoke.

Longrow Peated

(Distillery: Springbank, Region: Campbeltown)

Springbank Distillery's Longrow Peated
Springbank Distillery's Longrow Peated -Credit:Whisky Exchange

We finish at Springbank, a smaller distillery renowned for its delightful traditional whiskies. Longrow is their peated offering, and it is an absolute treat. With flavours of charred marshmallows and sweet fruits, it's sure to have you reaching for another glass.

A bit more robust than the Benromach, this gives a sneak peek into what you can expect from the smokier end of the spectrum.

The best part? If you enjoy it, Springbank frequently experiment with casks, offering a variety of different tastes to discover.

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