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1998 Lagavulin Distillers Edition Single Malt Scotch Whisky (700ml)
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- ABV 43%
When Lagavulin decided to produce a secondary cask-finished version there were doubters who thought nothing could be a match for the pungent strength of whisky. Those sceptics were probably unfamiliar with Pedro-Ximenez. This distinctive 16 Year Old bottling has all the classic Lagavulin sea-spray notes matched by the sweet accents of sun-dried grapes derived from PX cask wood.
Tasting note: [1998 vintage] Polished brass. Iodine, sea spray, kelp, lanolin and white pepper over sweeter scents of vanilla, cocoa and shortbread. Lighter bodied than the standard issue, but also more silky; mildly salty with peat infused raisin bread, honey, pepper and hints of liquorice bullets in the aftertaste. Superb balance. Ends kippery, dry, with the whisky almost taking back seat to the sherry. Like a mouthful of smoked-fruit'n'nut chocolate. Quite feminine by this distillery's standards, but one of the highlights of the DE range. Try it with aged cheeses. 43% Alc./Vol.Previous notes: (1995 Vintage Reviewed) - Bright gold / brassy appearance. A sweet, lifted opening aroma reveals choc-fudge and honey with the peat coming through underneath as lanolin / wet wool / old liquorice. Astonishingly silky and soft by Lagavulin standards, with the peat smothered by fruit’n nut chocolate and honeycomb, but the balance is right. Retains its freshness to the finish as soft peat returns into the dry aftertaste with a lanolin and old liquorice flourish that shows good length.
Other reviews... (1995 Vintage Reviewed) - It’s a brave person who tries to persuade a malt like Lagavulin to go into a different direction. Indeed, even PX casks, from the sweetest fortified wine of all, can’t fully obscure the distillery’s character, just give it a raisined coating. The creosote turns to tar and licorice, while there’s Syrah-like sootiness, and damson. This release is slightly less sweet than in the past and is the better for it, though I still prefer my Lagavulin relatively ‘naked.’ 88 points
www.maltadvocate.com, (Vol. 21, #2) Reviewed by: Dave Broom