Laphroaig 21

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Thanks to /u/j4ni for this sample.

I’m on a roll… of 2. Well, 101 if we’re counting Islay, and a bunch if we’re counting Laphroaigs.

Hit my 100th Islay review the other day. Felt pretty proud about that. Kinda wish there was something Islay-esque I could afford to do. Perhaps I’ll open the Laphroaig 25 CS at some point.

However before I do that, I should probably try this sample of Laphroaig 21. And… uh, about 100 more samples I have sitting around. But for today, just that one.

This version of Laphroaig 21 year was aged in first-fill bourbon casks, and sold only to friends of Laphroaig.

Which makes me feel silly for starting the “Enemies of Laphroaig” group. What was I thinking?

Anyway, it’s sold in half bottles and isn’t the one you saw Katy Perry carrying. That’s the higher proof one that you get if you go near John Mayer’s dick. Because I haven’t had a chance to do that yet, I haven’t tried it.

Give it time, he’ll love my curves.

Anyway, this version was brought out as part of the 200th Anniversary of Laphroaig. I’m very happy to have the chance to try it without having to hear about my body being a Wonderland (more like a log flume, really).

So, let’s see how this tastes, shall we?

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Price: N/A at the LCBO

Region: Islay

Abv: 48.4%

Colour: 5Y 9/8

Nose: Cherry, pear juice, BBQ beef brisket, cereal, butterscotch, cranberry

Lots of different notes here. The peat has changed quite a bit over the years. Rather than overt smoke or peat notes, it’s more complex.

The barrels here have done quite the job on the nose. Lots of fruit flavours, and even some cereal notes. Quite nice, if subtle.

Taste: Peat, lemon juice, pear, menthol, lime rock candy

It goes from Fireworks to Flop here, unfortunately. The flavours are more simple, there’s little complexity, and while it’s nice to sip on, doesn’t scream “I am a Tiger”, if you get my meaning.

Don’t get me wrong, it’s tasty, it’s just not the same Jesus tattooed girl I knew in the nose, and that’s jarring for some.

Finish: Charcoal, cumin, ginger, celeriac, roasted plain mushrooms, grass

The finish attempts to rally and make the charts here, and does an alright job. There’s a lot of earth notes, which is unbalancing though interesting. I’d say I’m torn, but that’s a different pop star and we’re trying to go for a running gag here.

All in all I like the finish in the end, and it makes up for the taste, however still not that complex.

Conclusion: Good try, but I think the barrels let them down on these ones. Or perhaps they didn’t? I think if you drank this and love the nose, it’s for you. And that’s a fair assessment, as a lot of whisky drinkers do drink it for the nose.

For me it gets lost in the jungle and ends up with a naked Orlando Bloom at the end. Sure, that’s okay, but eventually you’ll get bored of the unaging looks and giant dong and be left with an “okay” whisky.

Now if the other is a Gimli type whisky, I’ll take that any day.

78/100

Scotch review #474, Islay review #101, Whisky Network review #777

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