Scotch
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Laphroaig 10 Year

by on November 17, 2017
Details
 
Class

Islay Single Malt Scotch

Average Price

$35-$40 US Retail

Positives

Briny, peaty, seaweed-campfire to the extreme. There's nothing like Laphroaig! You may absolutely love it. Very affordably priced.

Negatives

Briny, peaty, seaweed-campfire to the extreme. There's nothing like Laphroaig! You may absolutely hate it. The palate is a bit unrefined, but a couple drops of water improves it.

Editor Rating
 
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Total Score
77%

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Bottom Line
 

Must try.  I fully believe that Laphroaig 10 should be part of the scotch education for every person with an interest in scotch whisky.  There is nothing like it!

 

The Laphroaig Distillery, which is located on the southern coast of Islay, produces some of the most polarizing and unique whisky in the world.  Many love it and many hate it, but few remain neutral towards the whisky from this seaside distillery.

Laphroaig was originally established in 1815 and changed ownership a number of times before landing in the hands of Beam-Suntory in the 21st century.  It is a large scale operation, with 3 active wash and 4 active spirit stills, but it still does a portion of its own floor maltings (the rest are done at the Port Ellen malting floors), and it ages all of its casks onsite where a complex of both dunnage and racked warehouses are nestled between the distillery and the sea.  All of Laphroaig’s whisky is heavily peated using peat harvested from a local Islay moor, and all but certain special releases are aged in ex-bourbon casks of varying sizes and fills.  The 10 year is the distillery flagship and the youngest in the age stated line, although the distillery also releases a few NAS bottlings.

Notes:

  • Bottled at 43% ABV (American Release)
  • Chill filtered and artificially colored
  • Aged in ex-bourbon casks

Nose:  Unmistakably Laphroaig.  Filled with brine and soggy beachwood campfire and a salted, smoked meat note.  It;s an aggressive aroma that you can smell from a couple feet away from the glass.

Palate:  Light, oily mouthfeel.  Again there is a full assault of brine/seaweed, peat, and smoked meat, but some malted vanilla and confectionary notes are able to peek through just enough to be detectable.

Finish:  Slightly sweet. The peat campfire lingers all over the mouth long after I’m finished.  This finish is LONG.  Luckily, the taste leftover is warm and friendly, a pleasant reminder of the liquid I just enjoyed.

Note about water:  A couple drops of water is preferred here to smooth away some rough edges.  Keep it to just a couple drops and the peat intensity is not affected.

Buying Recommendation:  Must try.  I fully believe that Laphroaig 10 should be part of the scotch education for every person with an interest in scotch whisky.  You may hate it, but you may love it.  Either way, your whisky adventure will not be the same once you try it!

The Rating Scale

At WBSE we use a true 100 point scale for scoring to allow whiskeys to further differentiate themselves (as opposed to a letter grade scale where 90% of whiskeys fall between 78-92). This allows you to more easily compare scores between different whiskeys. Here is how the scale breaks down:

1-49: Varying degrees of bad
55: Average
60-69: Better than average
70-79: Solid/Good
80-89: Excellent
90+: Truly Exceptional

All thoughts and opinions expressed are original to the author of the review or article. We are in no way paid to express any specific opinion about any specific company or product.

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  • Don Brown
    December 19, 2017 at 4:36 am

    I love that one of my photos is featured for this. This Islay icon is one of my favorites. Very fitting. Great job, Andrew!

    Reply

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