Lagavulin 25 year old is a ‘super-premium limited-edition’ single malt whisky released as a part of the iconic distillery’s 200th anniversary celebrations. This exclusively Sherry cask matured expression is limited to 8,000 individually numbered bottles and available from selected specialty shops with a price tag of £799 / $1200. (Pricing may differ on markets around the world)
2016 has been the year of Lagavulin for many whisky enthusiasts. This year, the legendary distillery from Islay is celebrating its 200th anniversary and to commemorate this special occasion they have been releasing great limited editions throughout the year.
Regulars of my site know that I am a big fan of Lagavulin expressions and I review these special releases with great enthusiasm. Lagavulin 8 year old 200th Anniversary Edition, the official worldwide bottling for the 200th Anniversary, is a great example to show that younger whiskies can also achieve great tastes. My review of Lagavulin 18 year old Feis Ile 2016, which was also featured by Lagavulin, showed that Lagavulin can also be a great fresh alternative to be enjoyed on those warm summer nights.
Lagavulin 25 year old is the crown jewel of these special series. This expression is released as a recognition of the contribution made by the distillery managers throughout the proud history of the distillery. This has also been reflected on the bottle design itself as the names of the 19 distillery managers along with the names of founders John Johnston and Archibald Campbell are etched to the front of the bottle.
Georgie Crawford, distillery manager at the Lagavulin commented:
“For two centuries, Lagavulin has been crafted through the hands of hard working Islay residents; from peat cutters to warehousemen; the characters that make Lagavulin what it is today share a passion for producing an award winning Islay dram, and I am proud to say that I am part of this passionate group of people.”
Dr Nick Morgan, Diageo’s Head of Whisky Outreach added:
“To continue this special birthday we wanted to release a brand new bottling to Lagavulin enthusiasts worldwide. The 25 Year Old is a sublime expression of Lagavulin, I couldn’t think of a better way to pay homage to the distillery managers. This year our aim is to bring as many people to Islay and Islay to as many people from around the globe as possible to celebrate years of craft and passion.”
A special thanks goes to Mr. Colin Dunn, the brand ambassador for Diageo and the organizers of The Whisky Exchange – Whisky Show 2016 for giving us the chance to sample this dream dram.
Lagavulin 25 Year Old Whisky Tasting Notes
Color: Glamorous almost dreamy gold color. As if sunshine is captured in a bottle…
Nose: Everything you would expect from a Lagavulin on a new level. Subtle and well balanced. Dried fruit aromas adorned with very light toffee sweetness. Smoke and resin as if coming from a new log put into a bonfire. Freshness on the background from apples and a little bit of mint. Traditional medicinal and salty notes lingering around like a light breeze on a beach. Overall complex, rich and robust.
Palate: Oily and soft textures. Woody flavors and smoke hits you first. Traditional meaty flavors combine with charred wood and burnt resin. Bitterness quickly fades as the sweet notes of fruits and honey takes over and calms everything down a bit. Mint and salt flavors keep you fresh.
Finish: Long and sweet finish. Some spiciness and bittersweet notes on the tongue. Satisfying and luxurious Lagavulin experience in your mouth. You don’t want it to finish.
Lagavulin 25 year old is a ‘super-premium limited edition’ expression meaning the expectations from this bottle is very high. On the other hand it also means It will be out of reach for the majority of enthusiasts, including myself, other than special events.
From my point of view this expressions will be more of a collectors items to be stored somewhere than being enjoyed with friends. It does offer some great aromas and flavors especially if you are an Islay Whisky fan. I wish they would release this on a price level comparable to some other similar aged products in the market so it would have a wider audience. Again, if you ever get a chance to try this, even costing a little bit more than your usual dram, go for it. You won’t regret it.