It’s getting close to Passover, which means that soon I will have no access to my cabinet for 8 days, and there will be precious few chances to dram before the cabinet is sealed. It’s been a month since my last review. Time to get working.
Before this week I don’t think I had ever tasted Laphroaig 10, and the only low proof expression from this distillery I’d had was a generous portion of the 15 YO I tasted outside Roy Thompson Hall at SOT (Thanks Marcio – wait, thanks to the person who befriended Marcio). I’m used to high powered expressions like Cairdeas, 10 YO CS and QC.
Thanks to @OdysseusUnbound, I can now say I’ve tried the standard 10 at 43%. I sipped a few CCs of it a few nights ago and found it interesting, but I was trying to enjoy it, not dissect it.
This bottle was opened in December 2016. I received a sample in November 2017. This expression is reviewed in my usual manner, allowing it to settle after which I take my nosing and tasting notes, followed by the addition of a few drops of water, waiting, then nosing and tasting. For fun, I poured a little of the CS (batch 5 – 57.2%) to see how it stands up.
I am a little stuffed up tonight so this may affect my notes. Read at your own risk.
Neat, it starts out quiet. I get some citrus rind and ash, and a little iodine. I could use a little more power but what’s there is very nice. A little less smoky with a little water. (21.5)
In contrast, the CS smells a little drier and I get a little less citrus. With water the nose is much stronger than its 43% cousin.
Immediately my mouth feels like it licked a stale ash tray. For some reason many of us would say that’s a good thing! It’s dry, peppery, with a hint of citrus in the background. I get a tiny hint of eucalyptus, like in a cough drop. Creamier on the entry with water, and spicier (pepper mostly) on the development. A little more minty. (21/25)
The CS is like a cannon next to a musket. Enough said.
Quite long. Mostly pepper and ash. No real change with water.
The nose is slightly underpowered and the palate is a little less complex than the nose. Water washes out the taste a little.(21/25)
Score: Neat - 86.5 /100 With Water: 85/100
I suppose that some would say it’s not fair to compare it to the cask strength. It probably isn’t, but the above notes are an assessment of it alone, following which I placed it H2H with its big brother. The CS simply has more power and more body. I would probably accept a dram if offered, but in my own cabinet I don’t think a bottle would see too much use.
I finished by putting about half of the CS in with what was left of this one (1:2). It certainly bumps up the body (score around 87-88), but I still prefer the CS on its own.
Not a bad dram. Looks like I’ll be enjoying the next couple of hours…