Showing posts with label Laphroaig PX Cask. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Laphroaig PX Cask. Show all posts

Laphroaig 25 Years Review - Laphroaig PX Cask Review


“Laphroaig Special”

Whisky Review # 695

Country: Scotland
Region: Islay
Brand: Laphroaig 
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: 25 Years (Bottled at Cask Strength in 2014)
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 45.1%
Maturation: Mix of Bourbon and Oloroso Sherry Casks  
Chill Filtration: No       
Price Range: US$ 375-475 (March 2018).
Buying Advice:­čśö Good Malt but very expensive. Go for the 15 or 18 years!

Colour

Light Golden (Natural Colour)

Nose:

Sweet, Salty, Fruity, Mineral, Dry and slightly Dusty. The Alcohol is very nicely integrated. The typical Laphroaig Aromas are there but they remain discretely in the background. Mild Herbs, Spices and Oak. The Sherry cask influence is there but not at all overwhelming. Good balance. Quite mild for a Laphroaig.  

Main Aromas:

Sweet Barley, Buttered Toast, Vanilla, Fresh Fruit (Apple, Pear, Pineapple), Dried Fruit like Raisins and Apricots, Grapefruit Juice, BBQ Smoke, Wet Earth, Band-Aid, Iodine, Cinnamon and Mint. 

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Herbal Tea, Honey, Raw Meat on the BBQ, Nutmeg, Pepper, Cloves, Cardamom, Ginger, Tobacco, Polished Leather, Ashes, Tar, Green Vegetables, Dark Chocolate and Caffe Latte.


Palate:

Bitter-Sweet, Fruity and quite Salty with some Sour and Mineral Notes as well. Oak, Herbs and Spices are more noticeable. 

Main Flavours:

Sweet Barley, Vanilla, Fresh Fruit (Apple, Pear, Pineapple, Banana), Peat/Smoke, Iodine, Ashes, Grapefruit Juice, Seville Oranges, Herbal Tea, Licorice, Cinnamon, Mint  

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Toffee, Heather-Honey, Green Vegetables, Mandarin, Lemon, Dried Fruit, Sherry, Clove, Pepper, Almonds, Shellfish and Cocoa Powder.

Image result for laphroaig 25 years bottled 2014

Finish:

Middle-Long, Bitter-Sweet, Mineral, slightly Dusty and Dry. The Oak is far more present now. I find Sweet Barley, Salty Caramel, Vanilla, Smoke/Peat, Ashes, Tar, Lemon, Grapefruit, Apple, Mild Sherry, Leather, Tobacco, Cinnamon, Pepper, Licorice, Menthol, Cocoa Powder and Espresso.  

Drinking Advice:

Due to the small size of the sample, I only Nosed/Tasted it without added Water.

Rating: 86.5

Nose: 22 - Taste: 22 - Finish: 21 - Overall: 21.5

Drinking Experience:

Good. The 25 Years most likely matured in a mix of Refill Ex-Bourbon casks and some First-Fill Oloroso Sherry casks. The ABV of 45.1% is slightly too low. I'm not sure if it was bottled at Cask Strength. My gut feeling is that it was watered down. In any case this Spirit could do with a higher ABV, especially at this Price Level.  

Conclusion:

The 25 Years is a very nice and mild Laphroaig distilled in the days that Fruity Spirit was important to counterbalance the fiery Islay Flavours. Modern day Malt of this distillery is much more focused on Peat and Smoke. It's a matter of taste which of the two styles is more appealing. I have two issues with the 25 Years: the Price and the ABV and they are actually linked. The 25 Years is expensive and it deserves a higher ABV. As it is, it is slightly underwhelming for a Single Malt of this age. The Price/Quality ratio is not ideal. My recommendation is to look for the 15 - or 18 years instead if you can find them.


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Whisky Review # 696

Country: Scotland
Region: Islay
Brand: Laphroaig PX Cask (Triple Matured) 
Type: Single Malt Whisky
Age: NAS
Alcohol By Volume (ABV): 48%
Maturation: Bourbon Casks, Quarter Casks and PX Finish.  
Chill Filtration: Yes       
Price Range: US$ 70-100 (March 2018).
Buying Advice: ­čśĺ The 10 Years is the better young Laphroaig alternative!

Colour

Golden Amber (Artificially Coloured)

Nose:

Relatively Young and a little Dirty and Harsh. The Alcohol is not fully integrated. Bitter-Sweet and a tad Salty. The influence of the PX cask Finish is noticeable but not very strong. A few Mineral and Herbal notes. Medium Spice. The Sweet notes are a bit artificial.

Main Aromas:

Toast with a mix of Butter and Margarine, Toasted Malt, Salted Caramel, Vanilla, Factory Smoke, Dirty Earth, Soot, Tar, Diesel, Rubber, Dried Fruit like Raisins, Sultanas, and Apples, Dried Herbs, Cinnamon and Nutmeg.   

Supportive Aroma Accents:

Heather-Honey, Toffee, BBQ-Smoked Ham, Bacon and Shellfish, Iodine, Leather, Tobacco, Wet Stone, Clove, Pepper, Lemon, Aniseed, Grapefruit, Floral Perfume, Sherry, Licorice, Bitter Chocolate and Strawberry Jam.


Palate:

The arrival is slightly Thin despite the high ABV. The Alcohol is aggressive and quite strong. Bitter, Sweet and Sour notes are battling it out. Spices and Herbs are in there as well. A bit of a mixed bag. I miss balance and direction. 

Main Flavours:

Toasted Cereals, Treacle, Factory Smoke, Dirty Earth, TCP Pipes, Rubber, Tar, Iodine, Ashes, Smoked Fish, Meat & Shellfish, Grapefruit, Strawberry, Mandarin, Pepper, Cinnamon and Nutmeg. 

Supportive Flavour Accents:

Dried Fruit (Raisin, Apple), Dried Herbs, Licorice, Lemon, Aniseed, Toffee, Salted Caramel, Vanilla, Oak, Clove, Tobacco, Leather, Sherry and Milk Chocolate.

Image result for laphroaig px cask triple matured

Finish:

Medium-Long, Bitter-Sweet, Salty, Dirty, Hot and Spicy. The Bitterness increases towards the Dry end. The Sweetness is artificial. I find Toasted Malt, Vanilla, Tar, Diesel, Factory Smoke, Dirty Earth, Iodine, Smoked Ham & Shellfish, Charred Oak, Pepper, Nutmeg, Licorice, Dark Chocolate, Assorted Nuts, Strawberry Jam, Tobacco, Leather and overripe Banana.   

Drinking Advice:

When I announced the Changes in my Tasting Notes some days ago it rained reactions. Most were very positive about the concept with the exception of the adding Water issue. Unanimously I was asked to retain the added Water in the Reviews. You have convinced me that I was wrong on this issue and therefore I will continue to Nose and Taste with added Water as well if the size of the sample is sufficient.

Therefore I added a little Water to the PX Cask and the aggressive Alcohol retreats which is a good thing. The Nose becomes Sweeter with Milk Chocolate, Honey, Toffee and Nuts. The Dirty character is gone though. On the Palate, the Sweeter Sherry notes develop. The Finish becomes quite Thin though. There is certainly room to play with a little Water.

Rating: 81.5

Nose: 20.5 - Taste: 20.5 - Finish: 20 - Overall: 20.5

Drinking Experience:

Good. The PX was released in 2011, initially for Travel Retail only. Nowadays it is widely available. It matures for around 10 years in refill Ex-Bourbon casks, then for around 6-9 months in Quarter casks before being finished for a couple of months in Ex-Pedro Ximenez Sherry casks. The name PX Cask therefore is a little misleading in my opinion. Triple Matured would have been more adequate. 

Conclusion:

What a contrast between the two Laphroaigs I have tasted today. The old style well-balanced 25 Years Vs. the modern aggressive mixed bag called PX Cask. I must admit I liked the former a lot better. The PX cask is too harsh and edgy for me and the ABV is too high in this case. The PX finish must have been short as the Sherry influence is minimal. I honestly do not see the need for Laphroaig to add this type of expression since they already have a fiery crowd pleaser like the 10 Years in their arsenal. It's just a question of making more money with a slightly adjusted 10 Years I suppose. I don't know about you but this does not work for me! I'll stick to the 10 Years if I want a strong, fiery young Laphroaig!



The Pictures were taken during our visit in 2014