I don’t know about you, but my dealings with people that I have long admired, but never had chance to meet before, very often end in mumbling and embarrassment. I recently met one of my favourite comedians, who I have been to see at least five times. I didn’t really want to meet him, not because he isn’t a lovely chap, because I am convinced he is, but because I knew I would fall apart. However a very well meaning friend forced me into this awkward social occasion, promising me that I would be fine. Sadly, I only proved myself correct and fell apart. I mumbled some nonsense at him, lost all sense of intelligence and wit, then paid for a cd and walked off feeling hot with embarrassment.
Something about this Lagavulin 8 made me think of this experience. I think it was because their had been so much buzz around it, then I spotted a bottle on a shelf in a shop and impulse purchased it. I think that I was worried that nothing could stand up to my expectations.
Lagavulin is an Islay distillery that generally tends to produce thick, oily smoky drams.The kind my wife will smell from the other room and complain about. It has an interesting history, that starts with illegal distillation, moves through an tempestuous partnership with the nearby Laphroaig distillery and ends in ownership by Diageo. Apparently, the distillery is very worth a visit and visit we plan to do in September.
Appearance: Aged, well thumbed pages of an old, leather bound book.Aroma: Charcoal Smoke, Red Liquorice and Medicinal Cleaner.
Taste: This dram starts with a whirl of charcoal smoke, which combines with the sharpness of lemon and the sweetness of golden syrup. It is thick, full and dark, yet light. Here we are firmly fixed in the fireplace of drams.
As the dram sits in the mouth, there is a small fire, which blazes catches ablaze right on the tip of the tongue. It sets alight, burns brightly and then burns out. This action is warming and numbing.
Spreading from this fire is a rich, billowing smoke that fills the mouth, sitting most powerfully on the lips. This is sweet like a rich, golden syrup and round from the peat. This flavour lasts long abs draws moisture from the mouth.
Mouthfeel: This is a surprisingly light weight dram, which unlike its older sister, is light and yet still full of flavour.
Overall: Fortunately, unlike my dealings with the aforementioned comedian, this dram really stands up to the expectation. It is powerful, but incredibly well balanced. It could act as an excellent introduction to the distillery for those that are overwhelmed by the power and medicinal nature of the 16 Year Old.
Real Dram Factor: 8.4
Source: Purchased from The Whisky Shop, York
More Information: Discovering Distilleries
Buy Online: Amazon: Lagavulin 8 – £74.99