This is post n°500. No need to thank me, thank YOU for visiting this blog so often. Most people suggested to celebrate with the Laphroaig 1964 / 1981, so here it is…
Remember that it’s only 16 or 17 years old, it spent much more time in the bottle than in the cask. It has a unique yellow-brown colour – almost none of the red hues that we find in other sherry casks.
(43%, Berry Bros & Rudd 1981, 75 cl)
Nose: okay, let’s take it step by step. First step: quiet, almost velvety sherry. I wouldn’t say this was an Islay whisky. Step two: it IS an Islay whisky. There’s deep tobacco, some smoke, cold ashes and precious types of wood (cedar). Step three is where it all comes together with beautiful fruits, prunes, dates, berries… Lovely mocha. Old leather, a bit of musk. Toasted bread. Subtle oak polish. Something minty and metallic. Also, the coastal elements are superb. It’s very complex and perfectly smooth. I’m especially fond of the tobacco / fruit mix.
Mouth: very gentle and round, with some dates and sweet marmalade. Still a surprising amount of earthy smoke, although it turns out a bit weak and watered down. It keeps growing smokier with plain soot before turning slightly metallic and more briney, with liquorice and ashes and a cocoa edge.
Finish: medium length, dry and faintly herbal / bitter. Still very ashy.
Impressive how there are so many flavours in a wonderful balance. I guess the 30 years in glass had some effect, but it’s still an excellent showcase of the qualities of old-style sherry matured Laphroaig.
Thank you for the opportunity, Régis!