Wow. What a marriage. Simply brilliant interaction between oak and spirit. Here we have a whisky showing young and vibrant notes of every fruit under the rainbow, while at the same time purposefully striding with elegance and grace though the decades.
Tasted twice now in Laphroaig vertical tastings, my initial impressions have been cemented into bona fide opinion (not worth much, I know). Even after a few younger cask-strength expressions in those line-ups, this one wowed the socks off all present.
Picking fruits off the nose here is like shooting fish in a barrel. It is simply too easy. I believe one of The Collective even said something along the lines of ‘everything but mango’. Interestingly enough, blueberries dominate. I don’t believe I’ve ever encountered that before. Other big ‘uns…peach, melon and typically peaty citrus.
Wood influence is forefront. Mature and dusty, waxy and smoky. This is mellow and fruit-rich. Hints of tar and rubber are held at bay by the myriad of fruit. I kid you not…this is like a lightly smoked and salted fruit basket. Someone also mentioned maple, and yeah…kinda. The funny thing is though, the nose keeps changing. Somewhat like a reverberating beat that lets one note take the forefront for a moment or two before receding to allow the next to step forward.
The delivery is fresh home baked breads, caramelized fruit and soft creamy smoke. Clinging and utterly heartbreaking when it fades. One could get lost in this whisky. I only ask for the opportunity to try.
43%. Sigh. Oh…to have this at cask strength…
There are countless gems in the Laphroaig range, but here is the Hope Diamond. Sans curse, of course.
– Reviewed by: Curt
– Photo: Curt