Google The usual Lagavulin sisters

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Hi, this is one of our (almost) daily tastings. Santé!

October 25, 2017


The usual Lagavulin sisters

… that usually come out at this time of the year. I have to admit I’m a little late this time, there are so many new whiskies!

Lagavulin 12 yo ‘Special Release 2017’ (56.5%, OB)

Lagavulin 12 yo ‘Special Release 2017’ (56.5%, OB) Five stars We’re having these every year, and every year that’s a joy. Colour: pale white wine. Nose: Lagavulin’s sweeter peat at first, then the expected sooty smoke, Islay mud, crushed barley, then perhaps a drop of sunflower or sesame oils, whiffs of hand cream, and the usual ocean breeze. Drops of mercurochrome as well, just in case. It’s the purity that’s really perfect here. With water: that wet old tweed jacket, back from Dunivaig’s ruins while it was raining cats and dogs over the bay. Mouth (neat): lemony, peppery, ashy, and smoky perfection. I find it even more precise and concise than earlier batches. Doesn’t do a lot, but does it with utter perfection. With water: gets ashier and sootier. That feeling of having eaten some cigar ash, while the usual orange drops start to appear in the background. Finish: rather long, clean, rather on smoked oranges. We’ll have to try that one day. Comments: perhaps a slightly simpler and sweeter one, but we keep flying very high with these little 12s. SGP:457 - 90 points.



Angus’s take:
Lagavulin 12 yo ‘Special Release 2017’ (56.5%, OB) Colour: White wine. Nose: Pretty typical. A big glass full of smouldering embers, seaweed, peat smoke, hospital corridors and assorted freshly landed shellfish. A big squeeze of fresh lemon juice over everything to boot. Some nicely earthy notes follow with aromas of gentian eau de vie and mezcal with a wee sprig of rosemary as well. Quite a dry and savoury profile; a lovely mix of buttery pastry with black olives. With water: some iodine drops, coal cellars and cured ham. Mouth: Big, emphatic, drying, peaty and medicinal. Lots of these big, textural notes of petrol, wax and brine. Peppered mackerel, gravadlax, lemon oil, boot polish - a blade of ash swipes down the mid-palate. Intense purity and focus of flavour. With water: a little fruitier with some nice green and mineral touches. Stone fruits and more medical complexities. It’s tempting to call these bottlings simplistic but I find the purity and precision of it all quite compelling. Finish: Long, ashy, lemony, mineral and with a big fug of germoline and blue peat smoke. Smoked oats and barley bringing up the rear. Comments: Dependably delicious and enlivening as ever. I feel these latter releases of the past few years have been noticeably drier, but the power and poise remains exceptional. An Islay benchmark in my book; the kind of whisky for seashores, late nights and friends. SGP: 358 - 90 points.


Lg7 (56.8%, Specialty Drinks, Elements of Islay, 2017)

Lg7 (56.8%, Specialty Drinks, Elements of Islay, 2017) Five stars I agree, we have no proof whatsoever that ‘Lg’ means Lagavulin. I’ve seen somewhere that this is a 2007 vintage. Colour: white wine. Nose: same family, obviously, but it seems that this one’s tenser and more austere, with less fruity sweetness and rather more medicinal notes, from tincture of iodine to camphor and menthol cream. It’s probably good for rubdowns when you get sore, this. With water: grassier than the OB, also with more linseed oil, shoe polish, petroly riesling… Mouth (neat): once again, and while it’s typically Lagavulin, we’re finding rather more sharpness, iodine, green tea, green tannins, then fizzy orange drops. Quite a lot of green pepper in the background, Seville oranges... With water: very dry, ashy, earthy. No sweets this time, rather unsweetened lapsang souchong. Finish: long, very good, with a mentholy freshness. Comments: rather more extreme and even smokier than the OB, and certainly more peppery. I tend to like it a notch better. SGP:358 - 91 points.

More tasting notes Check the index of all Lagavulin I've tasted so far






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