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  1. #1
    Bourbonian of the Year 2011
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    Laphroig 10 years old

    I tried this in a charming pub, Running Footman, Charles Street, Mayfair (just off Berkeley Square).

    In Canada as an import it never tastes quite right to me, very phenolic, edgy and heavy.

    Here, the same bottle seemed completely different - soft, rich, smoky to be sure (from the peated malt) but very balanced, very much an analogue to, say, Rock Hill Farms or Elmer T. Lee in its fulsome smokiness and sweetness.

    I may pick this up at duty free, I am hoping that recent bottlings are aiming for this palate.

    One of the things I find about whisky is it can change literally from bottle to bottle. Then too at certain times the batches come out particularly well and uniform-tasting; I am hoping this is the case with this whisky at the moment.

    Gary

  2. #2
    Enthusiast
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    Re: Laphroig 10 years old

    This is one hell of a good SMS!

  3. #3
    Connoisseur
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    Re: Laphroig 10 years old

    I've fallen in love with the new Quarter Cask Laphroaig, you need to give that a try.

  4. #4
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    Re: Laphroig 10 years old

    Gary, I've mentioned this elsewhere but Laphroaig 10 is one of my favorites. As you describe it has a great mouth feel, full rich, amazingly smokey and peaty but it does have that sea taste/smell as well. Salt, iodine. I spent many years working offshore and the sensory assault of Laphroaig takes me back to those days with every pour. I have a bottle of the Quarter Cask I bought in Scotland last spring. Have to pop that one some day soon.

    I've read that Laphroaig was the only Scotch imported during prohibition because they deemed anything this (strong, potent, BAD???) just HAD to be medicinal. Too funnny!

    Ken

  5. #5
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    Re: Laphroig 10 years old

    The Laphroaig 10 Cask Strength version (57.6%) is a treat. I've skipped the standard 10yo version based on reviews I've seen elsewhere; some say that the current standard version isn't quite up to older bottlings, but the CS makes up for it. Since I'm a relative newcomer to whisk(e)y, I can't really say so on a first-hand basis, but the CS is good stuff in any case.

    The Quarter Cask is also outstanding - you can't go wrong with either it or the CS (provided you like Laphroaig in the first place).

  6. #6
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    Re: Laphroig 10 years old

    Tried as I might, I can't get into this one. I like other "peat monsters" like Ardbeg 10, and Lagavulin 16 but this one just doesn't do it for me.

  7. #7
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    Re: Laphroig 10 years old

    Tried as I might, I can't get into this one. I like other "peat monsters" like Ardbeg 10, and Lagavulin 16 but this one just doesn't do it for me.
    Peat and geography are the ONLY things those whiskeys have in common. Otherwise, they are very different. Laphroaig in particular is like nothing else on Earth, much less the island of Islay.

    Don't feel bad if you don't like Laphroaig. It's definitely a love-it-or-hate-it dram. The people who love it are just more vocal than the others.

  8. #8
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    Re: Laphroig 10 years old

    Hi Frodo,
    That is interesting, I am just now having my first pour of this whisky in quite a long while and it is doing the trick for me. Yesterday I got out a bunch of bottles of Scottish and Japanese malts that have a smoky note to them. I had just opened a bottle of Ardbeg 17 yo and found it disappointing the night before. Not bad, but... There is a certain threshold of peatsmoke that a whisky must either be above or under for me to like it. Takatsuru 12 yo, Nikka's Yoichi 10, another Nikka 70th anniversary malt were under or right at the lower limit. Yoichi 10 yo cask strength was just over the upper limit. The higher abv of that last helped a little, too. Talisker 10 yo was in the just at the lower limit. Its pepperiness helped out there. The Ardbeg 17 and, to a lesser extent, the Laphrioag 15 that I sampled are in the no man's land of too much peat and/or too little peat to satisfy me. Last night the Ardbeg 10 yo won the laurels. The kind of peatreek that makes you sit in your chair, glass in hand and sigh, savoring the finish of a fine whisky. However, tonight's pour of Laphroaig 10 yo is eclipsing last night's Ardbeg 10 yo. I will allow it a round in the ring now and see how it fairs tonight.

    Nosing the Ardbeg 10 just now and it smells malty without much peat. Seems that my peat receptors are saturated. Now a little more peat, time for a sip. No disappointment, but the Laphroaig seems to be the winner, at least tonight.
    Ed

  9. #9
    Bourbonian of the Year 2011
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    Re: Laphroig 10 years old

    I am sort of a Laphroig 10 "expert" by virtue of buying recently in England a three pack which combined the 15 year old, regular 10 year old, and 10 year old cask strength Laphroig. The regular 10 is 43% abv. In an English pub, I had had a 40% version. Therefore, I've had them all I believe except for the new Quarter Cask version.

    My conclusion is, Laphroig is as Chuck says quite unique in taste even for Islay. I think too the classic taste is at 10 years old. The 15 is good but is not Laphroig as most of us know it. The big phenolic notes start to fade out at that age and the malty and barrel notes come more to the fore.

    The cask strength 10 year old is very good but I can't sip it at that strength. Even the regular 10 year old seemed a bit sharp. Try as I could with water, I couldn't get these to taste as good as the regular 40% domestic version sold in England. I believe that the water and precise measurement used at the distillery results in the perfect balance of this drink at 40%. If I could vat all three of my Laphroigs and adjust it exactly to 40% that's what I'd do.

    It is a classic drink of scotch whisky to be sure and each has his preferences but to me it's perfect at 40% abv and not too old (my proposed vatting would still qualify it as 10 years old of course).

    Gary

  10. #10
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    Re: Laphroig 10 years old

    The bottle I have now is 43% abv. I have wanted to try the Cask Strength for a long time, but I haven't wanted to pay almost double the price of the 43% version.

    It is funny, but I haven't wanted a smoky peatmonster for a long while. The whole of the summer months malt whisky, peated malt whisky in particular, held little or no appeal. Now that winter is here it tastes mighty fine.
    Ed

 

 

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