Originally Posted by HP12
Well, what a coincidence, my wife has surprised me with a bottle of Laphroaig 10. Initially I was looking for cask strength but where she was had limited expressions. Although she was going to get me a Lagavulin 16 (which they didn't have), I figured this will be a good intro as I journey into Islay.
Can anyone explain the differences between Laphroaig 10, quarter cask and cask strength? Other than ABV diffs, what are the nuances between them? At some point I will likely get a bottle of cask strength and do a side-by-side taste test with the Laphr 10.
Unless there is a large difference between the 3 Laphroaig expressions, I'll plan for my next peat monster to be the Laga 16. Your thoughts? TIA!
I can't explain the differences, as I'm still fairly new to this, but I find both the Laphroaig 10 and Laphroaig Quarter Cask to be mutually necessary; close but different is the best I can say.
The Cask Strength was enjoyable enough for me, but I prefer the other two.
Originally Posted by Soundmangt4
The first time I tried Laphroaig or Lagavulin 16 I thought they were horrible and medicinal, tasting of TCP. Yet after a small period of enjoying other single malts, especially a lot of Talisker, when I returned to both whiskies they was no hint of medicine, just glorious smokey wonderfulness!
It is amazing how your taste buds and palette can change over a small period!
I too disliked the bottle of Laphroaig 10 I bought last year, but about a week into it and I was sold. Lagavulin 16 = swoon at first taste!
Originally Posted by Dale
...and the fruitiness and floral notes more easily show through. It is one reason a Laphroaig 30 isn't as appealing to many who love Laphroaig 10 - they love the more prominent iodine and medicinal in the 10 (not to mention its $55-60 price) compared to the tamer 30 (with its $500+ price). Of course, not every distiller's spirit ages gracefully, and we all know (or should) that older isn't necessarily better. There are many distillers whose younger expressions I prefer to their older ones.
For someone wanting to discover peat without the iodine and medicinal characters being dominant, try Springbank 10, Glenturret, Benriach Curiositas Peat. These range in their use of peat but all have tempered to no iodine and medicinal character. For someone who wants to experience peat, iodine and medicinal without spending $55-60 or more for an Islay, try Benromach Traditional $35. Benromach 10, about $70, tames the iodine and medicinal because it is aged 100% in first fill sherry casks - this is a great whisky and great for understanding peat and wood influence.
I was a little put off when I found that I didn't like most of the older bottlings and it seems that with few exceptions I prefer 10 year bottlings over most others, Lagavulin 16 being a standout exception.
Thanks for the suggestions you've listed above and I can't wait to try all of them!