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I love Lag 16 and very much enjoy Lag 8. I had high hopes for this one(actually didn't know I got Guinness casks till I read label at home thought I bought standard release) Well Im pretty disappointed considering the price. Ok its not all bad were talkin Lagavulin Islay but too thin for my tastes. You get solid nose of smoky meats and brine. Palate is initially tasty with smoky vanilla and malt but its so short leading to the finish that is lacking with fading smoke and malty barrel dryness. If this was 20 bucks less sure ok but at $75+ I honestly have no use with the 16 out there for not too much more and the 8 for less. Of course I enjoyed the bottle(cmon its Lag) but would not repurchase..............84/100....hit for value and lack of depth/creaminess........I realize this review is harsh for a pretty solid score but I expect automatic 4+ stars for Lagavulin
I like this, I'm happy I tried it, but I wanted to like this more than I did, because I love Parks and Recreation, I like Nick Offerman, and I love the nose on this.
Nose: big, toasty-roasty-smokey burst, with an underlying fruit blossom and malt chocolate quality. Yes, it's undeniably peated, but it's not a peat monster
Taste: fore-palate is great, full of rich, salty, and savory flavor notes with smoke and ocean mixed in, like a cocoa dusted candied cashew. The problem is in the finish: weirdly flat and kind of sour, exactly like a stout that has sat out and lost its carbonation. I've done some experiments with fortified beer, and this reminds me of that
If you hold a sip for a long time before swallowing, the flavors round out a bit and the roasted malt chocolate (whoppers candy) qualities brighten up and redeem themselves a bit more.
All-in-all, good but not transcendant. Like, but not love. I'm happy I tried it.
The nose starts with a light peat smoke wrapped around dark semi sweet baking chocolate covered pretzels, then rubber and ocean brine before transitioning to caramelized apples along with dark roasted coffee beans that finishes with caramel gelato, ginger, and cloves with light ethanol bite.
The taste starts with a medium mouthfeel starting with semi sweet dark chocolate covered pretzels, rubber and ocean brine then light peat smoked caramelized apples, espresso affogato, ginger and cloves with light ethanol burn that finishes medium length with dark chocolate covered pretzels, caramelized apples, espresso, caramel flan, ginger and cloves.
Compared to the 16 this shows its youth with a lighter color and more astringent nose and taste that replaces the old tannic wood notes of the 16 with caramel and espresso notes coming from the Guinness finish. This is a very enjoyable drink and easy sipper with loads of dark semi-sweet chocolate, espresso, light peat and malty notes, but I think the 16 is better VFM and a superior whisky overall.