I wonder if it's that the Laph 10 and Lag 16 are too watered down for your palate. The Lag 16 is my favorite scotch, but I find it pretty thin at times.
Oh young grasshoppers.....where do I begin? ;)
The older Islay expressions are nowhere near "in-your-face" peat. You just haven't had the pleasure of sampling a large variety yet.
I've had a 38yr Bunnahabhain that Jeffrey Topping of Wild Scotsman was so kind enough to give me that would curl your toes. And yes, the peat was VERY tame.
A Laphroaig QC is certainly nothing to shy away from. The phenol content is minimal compared to some. Most Ardbeg's have higher peat levels in their traditional expressions than most. But offerings like the Octomore releases by Bruichladdie take peat to a whole new level.
If Laphroaig 10yr is in the 40ppm range.....some of the Octomore's get in the 300+ppm range. How's that for perspective?
And while they may be a one-trick-pony.....they're still worth tasting. Trust me. Like a firecracker in your mouth.....you've never tasted anything like it.
THAT, my friends, is "in-your-face" peat. :D
A lot of variety tonight. Some scotch, tequila and bourbon...
A fine night of tasting with SOB:
1. Embajador Mezcal
2. Angel's Envy
3. SB Blend
5. Balvenie 14 Caribbean Cask
6. Glenfiddich 15
7. Balvenie 17 Peated Cask
8. Great King Street
9. OF Birthday Bourbon
10. Elijah Craig 18
11. Crotalo Anejo
12. Cuervo Tradicional Reposado
13. JLP Reposado
14. Partida Anejo
15. Fina Estampa Blanco
16. Pura Vida Blanco
17. Don Julio 70th
18. 4 Copas Blanco
19. Chaya Blanco (15-19 done in blind tasting)
20. Aberlour 12
21. Tequileno 50th Ann. Anejo
22. El Ultimo Blanco
Obviously everything is a small sampling, but really a great variety of tastings done tonight. Twins victory and good basketball. A good night all around.
Maybe I will open up that Laphroaig QC, if you think it will be less of a phenolically experience than the 10 y.o. - it is that medicinal element that holds me back more than the smokey notes.
Do you eventually lose your ability to discern the higher peating levels? In other words, would an Octomore really taste 7-8 times more intense than a Laphroaig 10? Or do you eventually reach a point of saturation (which, by the way, is not a point I care to reach, at least at this point!)
Thanks ... good to hear from someone with more experience with these big Islays. How would you compare the phenolics between a Lagavulin 16 and the Laphroaig QC?
Earlier this morning I had a wee bit of Redbreast CS. What a treat. Too bad all mornings don't start this way.