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Recently purchased a bottle of 16 and this Lagavulin has serious shortcomings compared to previous bottling.
Nose: Sweet wood, very little smoke, anise, brine. Gone is the tar/freshly paved road, the burnt leaves, the damp saltiness, the strong smoke.
Taste: Very sweet. Too sweet for a Lagavulin. The peat is in the background. Smoke is also very tamed and only present in glimpses. Overall the sweet wood notes dominate with slight anise and bitters. What a shame, gone is the big peat and everything that makes Lagavulin great.
Finish: Smoke comes out here but it's too late of an appearance to save the show.
Overall I'm rather disappointed in this malt. They've taken a good complex scotch and made it rather one dimensional with a wood sweetness dominating this particular bottle. This bottle of Lagavulin is just not how I remember this malt being. Initially I thought it was because the bottle was new. But I've kept coming back to it to see if oxidation improved it. Nothing has changed and the bottle is now around half full.