Whisky Review: The Single Malts of Scotland Laphroaig 1996 Aged 24 Years

Style: Smoky, Fruity and Creamy

Nose:
Full of classic Laphroaig goodness, a mix of liquorice, marmalade and bonfire ashes. Followed by lemon citrus, salty peaches, almond flakes and roasted seaweed. Edging more towards the realm of raw Islay as we progress, lean barbeque pork, chilli shreds and smoked shellfish. Coffee and cream, minimal amount of manuka honey and vanilla lightly painted at the bottom.

Palate:
Golden malt trickles through with some beautiful naval oranges. Quite different from what the nose has indicated, you can forget about the smoke for a few seconds. It seems half of the smoke has dissipated and it has taken up the support role instead. Liquroice roots, brine, stewed tropical fruits and beewax wrapping around the core nicely. Tar, iodine and chocolate oak to finish.

Finish:
Salmiaklakrids with a strong smoky tang, citrus-tropical fruits leaving a lasting sweetness. Quite nice.

Thoughts:
A Laphroaig somehow manages to showcase the distillery character progression along the time axis. While part of it remains rather hardcore smoky, the elegant fruits on the palate indicates there is some fantastic composure and maturity from the spirit. Capturing the transition moment of this Laphroaig is rewarded with excellent complexity and dynamics, you get a bit of everything and it is neatly balanced in the same time. Good cask (side note, not sure what does the Jack Daniels cask do, probably it injects some extra creaminess to the spirit), but the bottle timing is even better. Very close to 2 stars.

☆+ [Recommended]

[51.8%| 1996 Distilled| 2020 Bottled| 217 Bottles| Single Cask| Cask Strength| Cask Reference: 1-104| Cask Type: Bourbon Ex Jack Daniels| *+]

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