If you’ve ever been to Islay, then you’ll know it’s a land steeped in history and tradition. Stories are passed down from generation to generation, and thankfully, the secret processes which result in the island’s most famous export, Scotch whisky, are also safely held by the islanders.
Following on from the distillery’s 200th birthday last year, Laphroaig Lore has been launched to pay tribute to the tradition of craftsmanship which has been passed down through the generations, since production first started in 1815. During this time, some things have changed, with each custodian of the whisky making their own mark – whether it was drying the malted barley at lower temperatures than most, using two sizes of spirit still or reintroducing the quarter cask to Scotch whisky-making. All have done this with the intention of continuing the malt’s fantastic legacy for years to come.
To honour this history, current distillery manager John Campbell has created a whisky that is described as being the “richest of the rich”. The new whisky is drawn from a variety of casks, including first-fill bourbon, quarter casks and Oloroso Sherry hogsheads to create a unique combination of flavours.
The nose though is unmistakably Laphroaig – rich and smoky, with maritime notes woven though. There’s a wee bit more going on there though with light notes of vanilla, backed-up with rich, creamy fudge. This all transfers right onto the palate, with rich peat smoke complementing a creamy sweetness, with a final chili spice. The finish is long and dry, but the creamy sweetness does linger.
Although this doesn’t feel like a major departure from the distillery’s core offering, Laphroaig Lore is still a cracking additional to the range. And here’s to the next 200 years of whisky from one of Scotland’s most famous distilleries!