Bottler: Cooper’s Choice
Age: 7 yo
Casks: cask 1340
uncoloured / unchillfiltered
We had something very old for the last review – how about something very young this time around? Young Laphroaigs can be very interesting, so let’s crack this sample open!
Colour: pale white wine
Big, phenolic peat up front on the nose with a touch of freshly roasted coffee smoke on warm, sugared shortbread (baked with a pinch of vanilla). A nice amount of minerality (crushed shells) is to be found in the background. A no-frills, young, spirit-driven Laphroaig, just the way that style should be. On to the palate next! Same style – big, phenolic peat smoke up front, with just a hint of iodine. Just after the initial smoke impression, the alcohol comes kicking in, paired with a citrus freshness. As soon as that passes, a rather chewy character presents itself. The sweetened shortbread is back and so are the roasted coffee notes and the minerality. There is not a whole lot going on in terms of flavour complexity, but that’s perfectly fine for a punchy, young Islay malt. The long finish, again, offers a phenolic, smoky punch upon swallowing with just the right amount of cask sweetness. Both sweetness and smoke, as well as a touch of minerality, linger for a long time.
Verdict: Don’t let the brevity of the tasting notes and the lack of huge complexity fool you – this is a very nice, young, punchy Laphroaig. It has been long enough in the cask to polish out the new make character and add some sweetness to make for a very enjoyable sipping dram for the peat heads. Probably hard to find these days – but I’m sure there are similar young Laphroaigs out there to be explored!
(Nose: 84 Palate: 85 Finish: 85)
Click here to read about all the Laphroaig whiskies I’ve reviewed so far!
Thanks a bunch to malt mate Manny for the sample!