Wine Dharma

DharMag January 2020 Lagavulin 12 Years Old Special Release tasting notes and review

Lagavulin 12 Years Old Special Release tasting notes and review The Lagavulin 12 years 2016 is a Scotch whisky of great charm, but you shouldn’t expect the classic peaty and spicy Lagavulin that the 16 years version has accustomed us to.

As you surely know this Lagavulin 12 year reserve is a special whisky, we could say that it is almost more intimate, less standard and freer to express the organoleptic qualities of the raw material.

Each version, each vintage of this 12-year-old whisky is a product in itself and behind it, you will find courageous experimentation, aesthetic research and an unusual thickness.

If you are a lover of classic Lagavulin 16 and love its mature complexity mottled with peat and sweet spices and ripe tones, well, get ready because this whisky is completely different.

It is clearer, much less smoky, more crystalline, less sculpted by wood and therefore more expressive, sharp, herbaceous.

Before moving on to the actual tasting notes, a note. We tasted it so naked and raw as soon as it was opened and the impact was disorienting. He reared up, dropped punches left and right: it was alcoholic and also difficult to read for the palate, which was assailed by an alcoholic density. This is because it is a single malt bottled “cask strength”, as it is after aging and therefore is not elongated with water.

A drop of water transforms all this dense material into a great whisky, with depth, crazy floral nuances, complex herbaceous notes, ripe fruit references, but not excessive.

The Bouquet

Cooked apples, endless iodine, nuts, honey, cinnamon, but also a thousand and more flowers, herbaceous traces that give an incredible depth to the distillate. Peat firm, but never oppressive, citrus embroideries intertwined with caramel.

What does Lagavulin 12 years whisky taste like?

Powerful and sumptuous, but never redundant, indeed the savory impetus is an unrestrained crescendo, at times algid, with menthol and peppery notes. It is not soft or pimp at all, it has stuff to spare, infinite persistence and a lot of thickness. In its own way, it is harmonious, because it is elegant, but it hits hard and the warmth on the palate does not discount anyone.

If we want to be honest, we feel that there is not the extreme paint of wood and peat, but the body of a distillate made with great raw materials. The subtle and languid charm of aqua vitae stands out with arrogance.

A brave whisky, full of warmth, alcoholic potency and aromas, but one that could perhaps leave lovers of the classic 16-year-old Lagavulin dumbfounded.

Is it worth trying?

Of course, and sipping calmly, with a drop or two of water, for meditation.

It is a more unique than rare case, but we can talk about the terroir of Islay. It is worth it, even if it costs a little more than the usual fifty to shell out for a good quality Scotch whisky.

Lagavulin 12 years 2016 anniversary, peaty Scottish whiskey The tide is rising in Scotland, if you want to try a pure and little embroidered product and you have square taste buds, this is the (slightly) peaty whisky for you. Otherwise, buy the 16 for a more vanilla experience and let it go, as Elsa would say.

Price of Lagavulin 12 years

110 euros. A rib, but if Eve is to be born, it’s worth it.

Food Pairings

English soup, spoon desserts, apple pie and all chocolate desserts, obviously starting with Tiramisu.

Photo credits