Islay Whisky · Whisky Reviews

#31 Lagavulin 16 – The Most Richly Flavoured Core Islay Malt

Review #31 Lagavulin 16 88/100

The first Islay malt I tried was the Laphroaig 10 and it was the whisky that opened my mind to how diverse the world of whisky can be.  Since then I’ve enjoyed trying a wide range of Islay malts, eventually being so enthralled with this wonderful whisky producing island that I took a trip there for a few days.

The Lagavulin 16 in my opinion is a cut above the rest of the Islay core range, when I say that I refer to the likes of Bowmore 12, Laphroaig 10, Bruichladdich Laddie 10, Bunnahabahain 12 etc.  It just seems to have a slightly better body, nose and finish.


Into the glass the Lagavulin 16 pours a dark straw verging on amber colour, with a quick swirl of the glass it produces a very distinct necklace around the glass which soon turns into very slow, viscous legs.

On the nose, Lagavulin 16 has less of the smack you in the face peat smoke that Laphroaig has, you don’t get enveloped in a blanket of peat smoke, there is more complexity to the smoke – pipe tobacco, beef jerky, smoked mackerel, pu’er tea, burning heather and a touch of leather.

On the palate, up front there is a rich cereal sweetness like muesli and linseed oil, these notes move onto more flavours from the shore such as saltwater, seaweed and smoked fish finishing up with a slight aromatic chemical profile of iodine and phenol.

Great dram, one of my favourites from Islay, and unfortunately killed the bottle tonight.  Had this one alongside a Harviestoun ola Dubh 21 to finish off my weekend.  Not sure how I feel about paying circa £50 for the new Lagavulin 8! Think I’ll be putting that off for a while, maybe wait till I can just get a sample in a bar, as the price is a bit savage for an 8YO.






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