Sorry, but can anyone explain to me how this can be a 16 years old Lagavulin? Even if this was distilled on the 1st of January 2005 and bottled on the 31st of 2020 – which is not the case, to be absolutely clear – this will still not reached the age of its classic counterpart. This might have something to do with the popularity of Lagavulin, which means that the distillery often is confronted with shortages of malt. Was the distillery silenced in 2004? I don't think so. Whatever may be the case this ‘Aristocrat of Islay’ got a second maturation on PX sherry casks and I am happy to put it head-to-head with the release from 2019, which was in fact distilled in 2003 and so did reach the age of 16 years.
Delicious nose on seaweeds, wet papers, earth, eucalyptus and red fruit. Chocolate with raisins. Soft peat smoke. The difference with the edition from last year is significant! But it is definitely no less good, don't get me wrong.
On the palate as well it is less sweet and more classic on apples, raisins and figs that are wrapped by a grand peatsmoke, lots of cold ashes and tobacco leaves. And yes, it is quite excellent indeed.
The finish is medium long, spicy and sweet with a wonderful maritime twist at the death.
Why plunder your bank account for this or that special release when this is available for only €80 and is so satisfying? Oh my, look at that: it's my 35th Lagavulin already!