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Type – Single Malt
Age – 10 Year Old
Location – Islay
Casks – ex-Bourbon
Price – £38.95
Smokiness – 3.75/5
Fruitiness – 3/5
Oakiness – 4/5
Spiciness – 2/5
Boldness – 4/5
This scotch is like having a reliable mate who is always there to help you unwind when needed. The Laphroaig 10 Year Old is a must for any whisky collection and for the price is extraordinary value.
The nose has that distinct Laphroaig and Islay peatiness. A lot of people will jump to thinking that this is a very smokey whisky but once you’ve tried smokier options out there like an Ardbeg or Octomore, you’ll eventually realise this is a very well balanced single malt.
But the peat aroma is mingled nicely with sweet notes with almost a hint of butterscotch and creaminess that you’d associate with using ex-Bourbon barrels. It’s not 100% clear if these are the ones used but our guess would indicate they are used to some degree.
When you first taste the Laphroaig 10, you realise how full bodied and smooth this single malt is. It’s packed full of flavour yet is not overpowering in anyway. Unlike their ‘Select‘ offering where the smokiness is like sitting next to a BBQ, the peat blends in well with vanilla and almost grape notes. A lot of people comment on the peppery or chilli notes but we disagree with that, particularly when you stand it up against some Highland single malts.
The finish is also enjoyable and this is where we find some of the ocean characteristics creeping in. It’s not a particularly long finish but that oakiness from the barrel stays with you, along with some of the sweet and smokey notes.
If you’re new to whisky, this is one to build up to as getting to grips with the underlying flavours outside of the peatiness can more easily be grasped once familiar with Speyside or Highland single malts. This may then give drinkers more awareness of just how balanced this whisky is.
The Laphroaig 10 is a great example of why older scotches don’t necessarily mean better. The Lagavulin 16 Year Old is a comparable whisky to this year the 6 year difference is not relevant. So in our eyes, this adds to the value this single malt. A worthwhile buy!
It’s fine (more than fine) without water or ice but adding a little can release some of the flavours even more.
Rock, Metal, Blues
This is one of our all time favourite albums. Metallica purists may say this was the beginning of the end for the band as they officially pulled away from their raw thrash metal however our opinion is that this was a sign that they knew how to develop and be ahead of the game.
This album is more mainstream and the production is certainly more polished than their previous albums but it’s very well balanced in song variety. You get the trademark Hetfield rhythmic riffs but their song writing takes on new levels with ballads like ‘Nothing Else Matters’ or Asian inspired ‘Wherever I May Roam’. ‘Enter Sandman’ and ‘Sad But True’ are powerful to say the least but it’s their catchy-ness which takes this album to the next level compared to previous albums.
Overall, this has their trademark rawness but is balanced with softer and more mainstream attributes which remind us of how the Lahproaig 10’s peatiness is balanced with the sweet and oaky flavours. Therefore, the Metallica Black Album is our pairing to the Laproaig 10.