As I’ve detailed in an earlier post, Rock Island is the new name for the former Rock Oyster series, part of Douglas Laing’s Remarkable Regional Malts. I quite liked the new Rock Island 10 Years Old, but another, older edition of Rock Island was also released by Douglas Laing. There’s only 4,200 bottles available of the new Rock Island 21, which is priced fairly at around 100 euro. It is created by blending whiskies from Islay, Jura, Arran and Orkney.
Rock Island 21 Years Old (46.8%, Douglas Laing, 2019)
Nose: Some charcoal, rock pools and salty sea spray, with hints of polished leather and sal ammoniac, but also a damp forest floor. Clearly some citrus fruits too, as well as candy canes and vanilla custard. Taste: A little less of a high flyer than the nose. Somewhat spicy (pepper), with a slightly sour and rubber-y note. Quite a bit of peat too, with a hint of iodine. At this age, I had hoped for something a little more elegant. Finish: Lingering peat and rubber.
I’m very fond of the Rock Oyster 18 Years Old, and consequently had high hopes for this 21-year-old release. While a good whisky, it didn’t quite meet my expectations.