Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival 2016
Shortly after the Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival 2016 was released, I tasted it during the Lagavulin Warehouse Demonstration. I even bought a bottle. However, it took me this long to write a proper review of it. Sorry about that.
From I wrote down in my notebook that day, I could make out (despite my handwriting), that this is mostly 15 year old Lagavulin from refill bourbon casks, but there’s also a significant amount of 8 year old Lagavulin from first-fill bourbon casks in here. Or at least, that’s what the legend Iain MacArthur told us that day.
Lagavulin Islay Jazz Festival 2016 (54,5%, OB, 6.000 bts.)
Nose: Lots of vanilla and ripe banana, and some gentle oak shavings too start, followed by yeast, tar and lemon juice. A hint of plastic and rubber, as well as peat of course, but it’s not super dominant. I’d say this has a fair chunk of young Lagavulin in it.
Taste: Dry, with a lot of roasted peanut skins, as well as a good amount of oak and wood smoke. A hint of peat, as well as some tar and brine.
Finish: After a little while the bananas make an encore, but it is mainly soft wood smoke that linger for a long time.
In my experience the wood has a bit too much to say, making it a rather dry whisky. A dry whisky of good quality, sure, but it does make it a little less to my liking than some of the other limited editions Lagavulin has released over the years.
Thijs is a spirits writer and accredited liquorist from The Netherlands. He runs the blog Words of Whisky and contributes to a number of Dutch and international publications.