Single malt whisky - tasting notes

03 Oct 2012

Laphroaig 20yo (SMWS 29.99)

Posted by: Ruben Luyten In: Laphroaig

SMWS Membership packNew members of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society get a membership pack which includes four minis of recent Society bottlings.

A few months ago, one of them was this 20 year-old Laphroaig matured in a sherry butt (alongside an Auchentoshan, Mortlach and Glen Ord). Only available for new members as far as I know, I don’t think it was released in the regular 70cl bottles that regular members can buy.

 

 

Laphroaig SMWS 29.99Laphroaig 20 yo (59,6%, SMWS 29.99 “Power and Scorched Earth”, sherry butt, 10 cl)

Nose: my God, that’s sticky. Full of raisins, oranges, thick honey, figs, hazelnuts… Huge tobacco notes as well, hints of leather. Isn’t this sherry, matured in a Laphroaig cask? Well no, there are indeed notes of ashes and cigarettes, and a few coastal hints, but less than any other Laphroaig, and they take some time to come out. Mouth: ah, here it is. More peat and smoke now, some medicinal notes, a few hints of rubber as well, I’m afraid. Fairly fruity, plenty of raisins, before fading on nothing but ashes and tobacco. Finish: long, smoky, with a winy edge and some oak.

That’s strange, a Laphroaig being overpowered by a fireworks of sherry. The typical aromas get blocked out – only on the palate does it fight back with plenty of ashes and smoke. It’s like a beginner’s attempt at getting the balance between sherry and peat right, add as much as you can of both and see what happens.

Score: 82/100

Laphroaig 20yo (SMWS 29.99) 3 Ruben Luyten 2012-10-03

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  • Roberto Sikora: This is really a great, great bottling. One of my favourite Littlemills so far... :-) Thank you, Ruben for this review!
  • george: i see you have tried st magdalene and say it is harder to find i am a collector of st magdalene and i have 40 bottles i am selling these date from 196
  • sjoerd972: I wish the guys at Bushmills would demand the labels to say "Northern Ireland" so we didn't have to speculate on the booze's origins.

Coming up

  • Bowmore Devil's Casks - Batch 2
  • Tomatin 1988 (Malts of Scotland)
  • Ben Nevis 1997 (Abbey Whisky)
  • Aberfeldy 12 Year Old
  • Blair Athol 2002 (Hepburn's Choice)
  • Fettercairn Fior
  • Bowmore Laimrig 15yo
  • Ben Nevis 2002 (Port cask #334)

1599 notes by Ruben

WhiskyNotes - Ruben LuytenThis blog is my personal collection of impressions, written while searching for the ultimate single malt whisky.