Thanks to /u/Throzen for sharing a dram of this one.
Nostalgia is a set of rose coloured glasses that will forever poison the past with sugar. It makes us second guess if things were really better, or perhaps not.
So when people discuss, with sadness, the discontinued Laphroaig 18 versus the Laphroaig 15 which replaced it. However I remember that people really enjoyed the Laphroaig 15 before Laphroaig 18 replaced it.
However there is discussions about the 15 being much older, and eventually the idea of changing it to 18 happened because it turns out the dram was much older than the 15 year name.
So what’s a whisky fan to do? Well you re-review. You also have your buddy pick up a bottle in India before the price goes up, because you know that the new 15 isn’t your cup of tea (given that it’s not tea and is Scotch, but also you enjoyed the 18 more).
In this case you don’t drink from that bottle, but a different one. So let’s see how this is the second time, shall we?
What better time then during my current series, “To Quaff a Laphroaig”?
Colour: 7.5Y 9/6
Nose: Musty, butterscotch, pear, vanilla, smoke
Initial nose is that developed, older peat that really comes with time. Gone is the big smoke, replaced with a dusty, more vanilla forward note.
So the question is: Has this oxidized too much? It’s quite light. However my last tasting was similar. Less leather and more musk this time around.
Taste: Salted caramel, pear, rubber, peach drink, Xmas spices
The taste is still here. Nice amount of salt and caramel here, with more Xmas spices rounding it all out.
If this is too oxidized, then it’s only in the nose. The taste still has those wonderful and unique developed notes.
Finish: Vanilla buttercream icing, brine, peach, anise, sesame seeds
Long finish. Day and night after having the last Laphroaig, this brings that super sweet icing. Which I enjoy, others wonder why I don’t have diabetes yet.
The answer is cod liver oil. Go have a cup.
Are the gullible people gone? Don’t drink that oil. It’s rough.
Big finish means happy me, at the end of the day.
Conclusion: I have to say I still enjoy this. This time around the nose was a bit more reserved. Perhaps the last one was a fresh bottle, perhaps this was a not-so fresh bottle. It’ll be talking to the other bottles about not feeling fresh, and then realize it’s not the 1950s and women don’t use those horrible products anymore, so perhaps bottles shouldn’t either.
The taste was those complex, big flavours, and the finish reminds me why I enjoy Laphroaig as much as I do. I still think this bottle is worth it, and it wasn’t nostalgia hurting our view of it.
Scotch review #816, Islay review #196, Whisky Network review #1327