Lagavulin 3 Years Cask Sample

IMG_1339Nose: A hint of barnyard on this one, too, but mostly quite clean smoke. Less fruity than its baby brother, but some pear peel and winter apples. The barnyard disappears entirely with water, and I’m left with smoke, iron, slate and a hint of sulfur.

Palate: Now we’re talking! Too much alchohol at this strength, but still smoke, roots and coriander seeds. A little fruit appears with water, but mostly there’s smoke and more smoke.

Comments: They could bottle this, but I think I will advise maturing it for another 9-13 years. It’s nice now, but it gets better.

Lagavulin Newmake

IMG_1873Nose: Sulfur, apricots and recently extinguished match. With water I find more tropical fruits, “grønnsåpe” (a traditional soft soap) and ashes, and a barnyardy note.

Palate: Barnyard, ashes and apple peel. The most intense barnyard character luckily softens with water, and I’m left with red apples, peat and ashes.

Comments: I can’t remember the rather intense barnyard notes from the last time I tried this, but then that was in the warehouse at Lagavulin and I don’t know how clear-headed I was (not that I’d drunk much, neccessarily, but just being on Islay can turn your head, you know). Once it’s softened on the palate after a sufficent amount of water has been added, this is a pretty good dram, but not so good that I wouldn’t rather have them mature it for a few years. I’ve tasted far better newmake (even this  week just gone) considered from a “drinking it as it is” point of view.