Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Lagavulin Distillery

Lagavulin Distillery
Port Ellen
Argyll PA42 7DZ

Islay, Scotland - Active

Flavour profile

Lagavulin is fragrant and smoky, not sweet and smoky like other Islay malts. I think the only sure fire way to ensure that there is some sweetness in Lagavulin whisky is to age it in sweet sherry casks - like the fantastic Lagavulin Distiller's Edition releases, aged in Pedro Ximenez sherry casks.

The whisky also absorbs vanillin well. All the official bottlings I've tried and recorded notes for (as well as a couple I didn't manage to note) display huge vanilla influences alongside the ubiquitous peat and smoke. Some fruit flavours are usually also prominent, although it's not always the same fruit.

All the Lagavulins I've tasted so far are here.

Lagavulin 16 yo - good
Lagavulin 12 yo 1991/2004 Cask Strength - very good
Lagavulin 1991 Distiller's Edition (1991/2007) - very good

Distillery history

Founded in 1816 by John Johnston. It was merged with a neighbouring distillery called Ardmore in 1837. It was acquired by James Logan Mackie in 1867, and passed into the ownership of his eponymous company Mackie & Co. Peter Mackie used the old distillery buildings to house a new distillery, Malt Mill, which was eventually closed, and now houses Lagavulin's visitor centre. Lagavulin distillery eventually passed into the hands of Scottish Malt Distillers, which eventually became part of Diageo. The distillery was silent in 1918, 1953 and 1960.

Lagavulin was, and probably still is, an important component of White Horse. Independent bottlings are rare. The flagship bottling is the 16 yo, although the famous, delicious one is the Distiller's Edition, usually aged around the same, matured in Pedro Ximenez casks.

Potted distillery facts

Water source: 2 Solan lochs, Loch Sholum and Loch Lochan
Ten, New England larch, 22,000 litres each
Wash stills:
Two, normal neck, 12,300 litres each
Spirit stills: Two, short pear shaped neck, 12,900 litres each
Spirit still Lyne arm: Nearly 45 degrees descending
Production per year:
2,300,000 litres

- The Scottish Whisky Distilleries, Misako Udo

No comments:


Get this and more blogger templates free at "Free Blogger Help"