Posts Tagged With: Single Malt

Tasting Notes: Lagavulin – 16 Years Old

Lagavulin 16

Lagavulin is widely recognised as one of the leading names in whisky throughout the globe and regularly falls within the same breath as its fellow southern Islay neighbours Laphroaig and Ardbeg. The 16 year old is the core expression of Lagavulin and has (deservedly) garnered cult status amongst whisky fans and peatheads worldwide. Each facet of the dram is distinctive and should be savoured.

ABV: 43%


Nose

M: It’s hard to describe without using its own name – its simply, big Lagavulin smoke.

R: So I get a real outdoorsy smell from this. Like a camp fire.With like a caramel-ishness.

 

Taste

M: Caramel sweetness and big rich, fruity flavours at first that are then instantly battered by full malty smoke and oak.

R: I find it kind of evaporates on the tongue very quickly, then fills your mouth with smoky deliciousness.


Finish

M: Brown sugar sweetness upfront and then the smoke builds and builds as it coats the throat on the way down, leaving a peppery spiciness in the smoky aftermath.

R: It’s like it’s light and delicate but simultaneously potent and powerful.


Verdict

M: Amazing. It’s hard to describe as it’s just distinctly Lagavulin. Regardless of whether or not you like smoky whiskies, one encounter with this dram and you can understand why it has cult status. “Mother’s milk” as Ron Swanson would put it.

R: Final verdict, for me, it’s not an every day kind of whisky. It’s the sort of thing you need to be in the right mood for. It’s an evening in front of the fire, with dressing gowns and cigars and a leather bound book kind of drink. One other point. I had a bit of a sinus headache when I poured the glass. It’s gone now.

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Lagavulin Bay

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Tasting Notes: Glen Scotia – 25 Years Old

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Glen Scotia 25

Known for their lighter, more delicate  single malt whiskies, Glen Scotia is one of the three remaining active distilleries in the legendary Scotch region of Campbeltown. Acquired by the Loch Lomond Group in 2014, and releasing only a few core expressions of single malts, the Glen Scotia 25 year old whisky was launched at the Campbeltown whisky festival on 24th May 2017 and promises to be a new staple release.

ABV: 48.8%


Nose

M: Nice gentle peat smoke upfront and then soft, fresh green fruits (apples and pears) when you give it a bigger sniff.

 

Taste

M: Light body and fresh fruits, kinda remind me of a crisp white wine at first and then waves of light peat smoke take over. Lots of delicate fruity flavours in there.

 

Finish

M: That white wine sweetness and fruitiness is quickly followed by peat smoke (more than I thought it would) and  a little peppercorn spiciness before fading back to the Parma Violet sweetness

 

Verdict

I’m amazed that all elements of this whisky have been in a barrel for at least quarter of a century. It is so light in colour and body, but that must mean that it’s maturity is all in the flavours. Really nice and fresh fruity flavours that are all complemented by the peat smoke. I would be even more intrigued to find out what it tastes like without the peat element. Overall it’s a lovely whisky and definitely one that’s more suited to the summer months, than the peat monsters I’d associate with winter. When it comes to the wallet though, there are 25 years of rent to cover within the bottle price, so it’s not something to go around drinking everyday, despite how much you’d want to.

 

I should also thank Steve @TheWhiskyWire for arranging the tweet tasting sample set 👍🏻

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Tasting Notes: Ardbeg – Uigaedail

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Ardbeg Uigaedail

Pronounced oo-gah-dahl, and named after the loch that provides Ardbeg with its spring water on the south east of Islay, this peaty puncher is one of the distillery’s core expressions. The master distillers have taken their revered smoky malt and given it a final and thorough sherry butt maturation. Bottled at a high percentage, this monster promises to be a heavy hitter in all aspects of the drinking exprience.

ABV: 54.2%

Nose

M: Quite sweet and surprisingly floral but sherry pokes through. The usual Ardbeg peat is there but seems to be restrained.

Taste

M: Ardbeg’s trademark peaty hit then really makes itself known upfront but isn’t as bruising as you would expect and makes way for a fruitcake/fudge taste with big, strong flavours to balance the peat.

Finish

M: A lasting burn with peat and sherry entwined, but the peat has the last laugh when you breathe again.

Verdict

M: This is a peaty whisky turned up to 11! It goes beyond being just about Ardbeg’s distinctive peat and power. The high ABV and peat on paper make it seem like it might blow your head off but actually it is balanced really well and doesn’t need taming with water at all – which makes it dangerous stuff. Definitely not a driver’s drink. The sherry influence is notable with rich, rounded fruit flourishes. Big flavours, big finish, big smile on my face.

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