The Islay whisky festival is in full swing , and fortunately I am on the Island with friends, having an awesome time, and tasting some fabulous whiskies. I was not planning on posting any tasting notes from Islay, but as I have some free time, and I’ve tasted this one a few times already, and since there’s quite a lot of those around, so people can purchase them well after the fest is over, let’s review it, right?
This year’s edition is based on Quarter Casks, which make it a Cask Strength edition of the well-known and quite popular QC, the guys at laphroaig were saying they got quite a few requests from people for a CS quarter cask, and this year’s exactly that. Quarter casks are smaller casks, which make them impart more flavours quicker, making the whiskies creamier, sweet and with more vanilla notes – you get the drill.
Nose: Starts quite sweet and creamy, with Scottish Tablet, caramel , vanilla fudge, and some white pepper to balance it. There’s also a nice salty Caramel touch, with the Laphraoig smokiness. charcoal, and maybe tar, but don’t expect a lot of medicinal touches on this one.. It’s quite mild peat wise , but still packs enough peatiness.
Palate: Good mouthful all in all on this one, with an initial peppery attack, moving to old style caramel candy , vanilla fudge, sweet smoke, salt and maybe a bit of sea spray , tar and soot, and quite a bit of warm wood smoke.
Finish: Sweet smoke, toasted oak, pepper, and more Tablet.
All in all this is quite enjoyable, but a bit too rounded and sweet for me. Not one of the best Cairdeas in recent years, although very easy drinking stuff, if you can call any Laphraoig an ‘easy drinking’ whisky. If you’re a fan of the QC, and would not mind an extra sweetness , and a fuller mouthfeel, you’re in luck this year.