Laphroaig 25 yr. (2018) - 52%
I don't have the kind of disposable income that allows me to line my shelves with cask strength, Islay scotch, aged over two decades. So this is a treat. I also happen to be a big fan of Laphroaig and am becoming more and more a fan of ex-bourbon casks as they help me focus more on the distillate. I've always found sherry influence delicious but often find myself more focused on the sherry component than the malt. When I found this bottle at about 30% off of Chicago retail pricing, enough stars aligned that I made it my 2022 splurge.
Notes: The nose is bright and medicinal with lemon, pineapple, faint band-aids, hay, mentholated smoke. The palate is over-contrentrated up front with candied fruit before the smoke and hay spike. Finish is soft with bonfire and ash. This needs water.
W/water (two drops/oz): More smoke forward on the nose. The brighter notes have moved into secondary notes. Less pineapple, more charred lemon. On the palate, more maritime notes. Shellfish. Long and defined. More pineapple on the palate as well. Then vanilla, lemon, sharp smoke, shellfish, lemon again and smoke into a long, low heat finish. That's a lot of fun. The weight is balanced and medium with an active structure. The longer it sits with water, the brighter and more tropical it becomes.
Score: 7 (Highly Recommend) Water brought it up close to an 8. Here's the final take away:
Happy with this purchase. Greatly enjoyed every glass. Would choose a different splurging option moving forward. No need to stash one.
10 - Reevaluate The Budget
9 - Stash Two (If Able)
8 - Stash One (At The Right Price)
7 - Highly Recommend It To Strangers
6 - Solid - Above Average
5 - Acceptable For The Situation
4 - Not Vocally Complaining
3 - Anything Else To Drink?
2 - Nothing Nice To Say
1 - Drain Pour