You’d be hard pressed to find a more classic expression than the Lagavulin 16. Revered by many, and for a lot of people also one of their first ever malt whiskies. I’m not one of those people. Subtle Highland or Speyside peat I tend to love, full-on Islay peat is not so much for me (with some exceptions). Anyway, here are my thoughts.
Lagavulin 16 (43%, OB, +/- 2015)
Nose: Fresh peat, sal ammoniac with heather and subtle wood smoke. Some lemon but also red fruit, strawberries maybe, which I don’t come across often when nosing. Salt and pepper. Taste: Salty licorice, peat smoke, tobacco and olives. Some sweeter apples and caramel in the background. The spirit is a bit watery, but the flavours are all here. Finish: Drying ash, walnuts. Salt. The finish is very long.
I like this, but I don’t love it. I can see though why this would be the go-to whisky for peat enthusiasts. Pretty affordable and pretty good.