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Ardbeg Supernova marks space experiment end

Islay Scotch whisky brand Ardbeg has revealed the third edition in its Supernova series to coincide with the return of its whisky vial from space.

Ardbeg-Supernova
A third edition of Ardbeg Supernova has been launched to celebrate the end of the distillery’s space experiment

In late 2011, Ardbeg, owned by Louis Vuitton Moet Hennessy (LVMH), launched a vial of whisky into out of space to test the affects of gravity on the maturation process.

Working with US space research company NanoRacks LLC, the samples have been sitting in the International Space Station for the past three years.

The vial will re-enter the earth’s atmosphere on 12 September, landing in Kazakhstan. The sample will then be taken to Houston, Texas to be reunited with the test sample from Ardbeg’s warehouse #3 to begin the analysis.

Dr Bill Lumsden, Ardbeg’s director of distilling and whisky creation, will lead the research alongside NanoRacks LLC. “We are now close to the end, close to finding answers to something previously unknown, which is truly exciting,” said Lumsden.

Thought to be Ardbeg’s “peatiest single malt”, the third edition of Supernova 2014, named after an exploding  star, has been launched to coincide with the return of the whisky vials.

It follows the release of Ardbeg Galileo, a limited edition 12-year-old single malt which was launched in 2012 to celebrate the start of the distillery’s space experiment.

Ardbeg Supernova is described as having an aroma of smoked lemons and pears, and a “peppery, spicy and electric” taste with underlying medicinal notes.

Bottled at 55% abv, the expression is available from select whisky stores and on the Moët Hennessy Selection from 12 September at an RRP of £124.99.

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