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Laphroaig ‘Lp8’ (1998/2017, Elements of Islay, 53,5%)

Stimulated by the Laphroaig we drank yesterday, we look for another one that could be somehow approachable: after a scientific research, after fifteen excel files with one thousand seven hundred crossed variables, we decided to blindfold the cat and choose the first sample to which it had approached. The cat knows, the cat is infallible: in fact the cat has chosen a Laphroaig almost twenty years old, matured in ex-sherry casks, bottled by Speciality Drinks in the enchanting and “medicinal” series “Elements of Islay”, signed Lp8. No more bullshit, let’s drink!

N: the profile is once again unusual, though very different from yesterday’s Laphroaig, and it is bent to the wishes of the cask: tonka bean and Ginseng root are the first notes that come to mind. Then, a deep sweetness of dates and blood oranges, all very sugary and sticky. Toasted wood and medicinal peat as a side dish, but without overpowering anything, on the contrary.

P: what an explosion of flavour! There is a very creamy sensation, like praline and caramel, while a certain vinous acidity (it reminds us of a sherry, though perhaps more of a Pedro Ximenez than an Oloroso; but also blood oranges, again) comes out vibrant and keeps the whisky alive in the mouth. The peat is powerful, with lots of burnt wood. Laphroaig’s medicines and marinity are not available.

F: long, savoury and burnt, with a caramelised sweetness on the background.

A successful and impactful experiment: we have now realised that ex-sherry casks tend to distort a bit Laphroaig’s wild violence, but on the other hand they bring out a strange new creature that we like. Though perhaps, to be honest, all this sweetness, all this boldness, in the long run they risk getting a bit annoying – but you know, it depends on the weather, on the mood… So please go out and give us a bottle. Now. 87/100.

Recommended soundtrack: Fu Manchu – Slow Ride.

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