“Since 1816, Lagavulin single malt Scotch whisky has been made in a picturesque huddle of buildings on Lagavulin Bay. Perhaps the most beautifully situated of distilleries, Lagavulin makes arguably the most intense, smoky and rich whisky of all. For many, this is the definitive Islay malt.” – Malts.com
Since we are rapidly approaching the start of our second year at “It’s just the booze dancing…”, I thought I’d go back to the beginning of my journey through the world of whisk(e)y and write a review of the Lagavulin 16. I was first introduced to this whisky at Johnnie Walker’s Journey of Taste, which was held at The Union League in Philadelphia. The Lagavulin 16 is part of Diageo’s line of Classic Malt whiskies, and is one of the many malts used to make their Johnnie Walker series of blended whiskies.
I acquired this bottle through the “It’s just the booze dancing…” Whisk(e)y Exchange Program. What that means is that The Wookie received a bottle of this fine whisky for Christmas, but since he isn’t the biggest fan of smokey Single Malts, we decided to swap whiskies… I gave up The Glenlivet 15 French Oak Reserve, and in return, I was given custody of the Lagavulin 16.
- Appearance: Deep amber. Giving the glass a brisk swirl results in long, slow moving legs creeping down the sides.
- Aroma: Peat smoke. Pipe tobacco. Dark brown sugar. Slightly medicinal.
- Taste: Silky smooth texture. Very smokey at first. At mid-palate, the spiciness starts to build rapidly and leads you towards a long, dry, peppery finish that coats your tongue and the roof of your mouth.
- ABV: 43%
This is the fourth bottle of the Lagavulin 16 that has been in my possession. To say that I like this whisky would be an understatement. Big, bold, smoky, spicy, and even a little sweet… this whisky is full of surprises! I won’t go so far as to call it my favorite whisky, but I would definitely put it on my Top 10 list, because even after all these years, it’s never disappointed me.