In 1994 Laphroaig received a visit from Prince (now King) Charles, who gave the distillery a Royal Warrant, something the distillery is of course happy to mention on the label. On this bottle, which was put in my hands by Jeroen of The Bonding Dram, that warrant is not yet mentioned. And while I'm not sure when exactly this was bottled, it must have been from before 1994 and consequently contain a whisky that was distilled in the early 1980s.
Whoppa!! Yeah, baby, this is old school Laffie with delicious notes of charred wood and peat, apples and oranges, salted caramel and bacon complemented by a soft touch of black pepper, licorice and stockfish.
The malt is delicious oily on the tongue. Almost creamy, even. Really mouth-filling. Firm notes of dark fruit versus the bright notes of citrus, tight peat versus an extinguishing fire pit and finally a salty edge against some caramelized wood and ashes. Delicious! The finish is long, sweet and salty at the same time with an umami touch on the deathbed. 'Everything used to be better,' is sometimes said and usually I think that's big bullshit. In this case... yes, that's right. This is absolutely top notch.