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Islay Whisky

Islay (pronounced ‘eye-luh’) whiskies are among Scotland’s most powerful, thunderous drams. Often with plenty of peat and smoke, brine and medicinal flavours, of all the whisky regions of Scotland Islay has attained a truly iconic status. When compared to the various drink producing regions of the world, be it the Grande Champagne designation of Cognac or the first growths of Bordeaux, or that distant island, Madeira, there is something magical about the illustrious Scottish Isle, some 35 miles from the coast of Northern Island.

There are some nine distilleries on the Isle. To the North there lies Bunnahabhain and Caol Ila, to the west of Loch Indaal sits Bruichladdich and further west, the newly founded Kilchoman - Scotland’s most westerly distillery. To the centre of the isle sits the mighty Bowmore, but it is from the southern coast, not far from Port Ellen and the closed distillery of the same name, that the most pungent whisky emanates, produced by the trio of leviathan Ileach distilleries; Ardbeg, Lagavulin and of course Laphroaig. There is a defined power to the whisky, peat being the obvious attribute, certainly the best associated. Smoke is both a flavour of its own, but is intrinsically linked with peat. The peat flavour is imparted during the barley malted process, the smoke used to dry out the barley is produced by burning peat.

There is a marked reduction in peaty power to the far north; the malts of Bruichladdich and Bunnahabhain are comparatively soft. In Bruichladdich’s case it is due to the relative shelter from the elements that the Rhinns proffers. For Bunnahabhain it is the unpeated malt and the water source, the Margadale springs, cutting their course in stoic avoidance of the peat beds of Islay. Islay single malts also have a refined salinity; there is a profusion of seaweedy, kelp-rich whiskies.

This is often attributed to the terroir. The Islay distilleries possess a relative close proximity with the sea, all of which save for Kilchoman, the only inlander. The sea spray is said to whip across the warehouses, the salty air penetrates the barrels and flavours the maturing whisky. Of late, whiskies from Islay have become increasingly sought after.

Bowmore Tempest 10 Year Old - Batch 5

70cl, 55.9%
Bowmore

From the oldest distillery on Islay comes the fifth release of Bowmore's 10 year old Tempest single malt Scotch whisky. This annual release is matured in first-fill bourbon casks and presented at…  More info

Bowmore Tempest 10 Year Old - Batch 5
7

Port Ellen 1982 (bottled 2016) (cask 16017) - Malts of Scotland

70cl, 56.8%
Port Ellen

An independently bottled Port Ellen, distilled in 1982 and bottled 2016 by German bottler Malts of Scotland. It was distilled in 1982, the year before the distillery was closed, and bottled in 2016.…  More info

Port Ellen 1982 (bottled 2016) (cask 16017) - Malts of Scotland
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Bunnahabhain 24 Year Old 1990 (cask 7401) - The Coopers Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)

70cl, 46%
Bunnahabhain

320 bottles of 24 year old single malt Scotch whisky emerged from cask 7401 in early 2015, distilled at Bunnahabhain distillery on Islay and bottled by The Vintage Malt Whisky Co. for The Coopers…  More info

Bunnahabhain 24 Year Old 1990 (cask 7401) - The Coopers Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)
1

Laphroaig 18 Year Old 1997 (cask 10951) - Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 48.4%
Laphroaig

Independently bottled Laphroaig matured in a single cask, quite a treat! Distilled in October 1997, this single malt spent 18 years in a refill hogshead beofre being bottled in December 2015 by…  More info

Laphroaig 18 Year Old 1997 (cask 10951) - Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

Darkness! Ardbeg 23 Year Old Oloroso Cask Finish

50cl, 49.1%
Ardbeg

Peat and Sherry is a combination that not everybody loves, but when it works... Wow. Also, if you subscribe to the formula 'one yummy thing + another yummy thing = a super yummy thing!' then this may…  More info

Darkness! Ardbeg 23 Year Old Oloroso Cask Finish
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Lagavulin 1995 - Feis Ile 2014

70cl, 54.7%
Lagavulin

Taken from European oak Sherry butts specially selected by Iain McArthur, this Fèis Ìle 2014 bottling of Lagavulin was distilled back in 1995 and stood out as one of the best festival release of the…  More info

Lagavulin 1995 - Feis Ile 2014

Ardbeg 2000 (bottled 2016) (cask 16016) - Malts of Scotland

70cl, 54.8%
Ardbeg

Ooh, a single cask Ardbeg here, bottled by German indie bottler Malts of Scotland. This was distilled by the legendary Islay distillery in 2000 and aged in a Sherry butt until 2016, when it was…  More info

Ardbeg 2000 (bottled 2016) (cask 16016) - Malts of Scotland

Octomore 7 Year Old 2008 (cask 2008000908) - French Oak Cask (Rest & Be Thankful)

70cl, 63.9%
Bruichladdich

An independent bottling of the insanely peated Octomore single malt from Bruichladdich distillery. Distilled on 19th March 2008 and matured in a single French oak cask, just 316 bottles were produced…  More info

Octomore 7 Year Old 2008 (cask 2008000908) - French Oak Cask (Rest & Be Thankful)

Caol Ila 28 Year Old 1981 (casks 5671 & 5672) - The Coopers Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)

70cl, 46%
Caol Ila

A 28 year old Caol Ila, drawn from a pair of casks and bottled by The Vintage Malt Whisky Co. for The Coopers Choice range. This was distilled in 1981 and bottled in 2010 - a release of 600 bottles.  More info

Caol Ila 28 Year Old 1981 (casks 5671 & 5672) - The Coopers Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)

Shellfish Platter 1997 (bottled 2015) - Wemyss Malts (Bowmore)

70cl, 46%
Bowmore

A single cask Bowmore, bottled by the folks at Wemyss Malts! This was distilled on Islay in 1997 and left to age in a single hgshead cask until 2015, when it was bottled at 46% ABV and bestowed the…  More info

Shellfish Platter 1997 (bottled 2015) - Wemyss Malts (Bowmore)

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old 2007 (outturn: 374 bottles) - Hepburn's Choice (Langside)

70cl, 46%
Bunnahabhain

From the Hepburn's Choice range of independently bottled Scotch whiskies comes an 8 year old Bunnahabhain, distilled on the island of Islay in 2007 and matured in a single hogshead. It was bottled by…  More info

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old 2007 (outturn: 374 bottles) - Hepburn's Choice (Langside)

Laphroaig 15 Year Old 2000 (cask 10972) - Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 48.4%
Laphroaig

A superbly smoky single malt from Laphroaig here, bottled by those daring Douglas Laing chaps. It was distilled on the Isle of Islay in September 2000 and aged in a refill hogshead for 15 years until…  More info

Laphroaig 15 Year Old 2000 (cask 10972) - Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

Caol Ila 2000 (bottled 2015) (cask 15061) - Malts of Scotland

70cl, 54.8%
Caol Ila

This bottling of Caol Ila single malt Scotch whisky comes to us via German indie bottler Malts of Scotland. It was allowed to age in a single bourbon hogshead from 2000 to 2015, before being bottled…  More info

Caol Ila 2000 (bottled 2015) (cask 15061) - Malts of Scotland

Bruichladdich Wild and Primitive 2002 (cask 561) (bottled 2013) - Samaroli

70cl, 57%
Bruichladdich

A smart looking cask strength independent Bruichladdich from Italian bottler Samaroli. The outturn was 330 numbered bottles.  More info

Bruichladdich Wild and Primitive 2002 (cask 561) (bottled 2013) - Samaroli

Bunnahabhain 26 Year Old 1987 (cask 2787) - (Berry Bros. & Rudd)

70cl, 46%
Bunnahabhain

26 year old Bunnhabhain single malt Scotch whisky, bottled by Berry Brothers & Rudd. It was distilled in 1987, then bottled over quarter of century later in 2014, being drawn from a single cask and…  More info

Bunnahabhain 26 Year Old 1987 (cask 2787) - (Berry Bros. & Rudd)

Bowmore 28 Year Old 1981 Vintage Edition

70cl, 49.5%
Bowmore

A limited edition 1981 vintage Bowmore single malt Scotch whisky, matured for 28 years before being bottled at 49.6% in 2010. Each numbered bottle comes with a certificate of authenticity signed by…  More info

Bowmore 28 Year Old 1981 Vintage Edition

Caol Ila 31 Year Old 1983 (cask 5298) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 49.6%
Caol Ila

A Signatory bottling of cask strength Caol Ila single malt Scotch whisky, matured in a single hogshead for 31 years. It was distilled by the Islay distillery in November 1983 and bottled in February…  More info

Caol Ila 31 Year Old 1983 (cask 5298) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old 2007 (cask 10966) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Bunnahabhain

A relatively young Bunnah from Douglas Laing's Provenance range, which features whiskies from 7 to around 14 years old. This 8 year old from Islay was distilled in October 2007 and bottled in…  More info

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old 2007 (cask 10966) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

Caol Ila 25 Year Old 1989 (cask 10749) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 53.6%
Caol Ila

Well aged Caol Ila, anyone? Oh yes, this is a single cask bottling of 25 year old single malt from the legendary Islay distillery, presented as part of the Xtra Old Particular range by Douglas Laing.…  More info

Caol Ila 25 Year Old 1989 (cask 10749) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

Bunnahabhain 25 Year Old 1989 (cask 388359) - The Duncan Taylor Single

70cl, 46%
Bunnahabhain

25 year old, Sherry-cask-matured Bunnahabhain single malt Scotch whisky, independently bottled as part of the Duncan Taylor Single range. This was distilled in September 1989 and bottled at 46% ABV…  More info

Bunnahabhain 25 Year Old 1989 (cask 388359) - The Duncan Taylor Single

Caol Ila 30 Year Old 1984 - Old & Rare Platinum (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 53.2%
Caol Ila

A stunning single cask Caol Ila single malt, matured in a refill hogshead from January 1984 to October 2014. It was bottled by Hunter Laing for their Old & Rare Platinum range, with an outturn of 246…  More info

Caol Ila 30 Year Old  1984 - Old & Rare Platinum (Hunter Laing)

Bunnahabhain 40 Year Old 1975 (cask 10704) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 51%
Bunnahabhain

Extraordinarily aged Bunnahabhain from top bottler Douglas Laing's Xtra Old Particular range. Just 258 bottles of this historic whisky, distilled back in January 1975, were produced.  More info

Bunnahabhain 40 Year Old 1975 (cask 10704) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

Bowmore - Batch 2 (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

50cl, 49%
Bowmore

The second batch of That Boutique-y Whisky Company's Bowmore is a smoky, muscular whisky with more than a hint of sherry in the mix. It comes with a rather wonderful comic book illustration of the…  More info

Bowmore - Batch 2 (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

Bunnahabhain 10 Year Old 2005 - Small Batch (WM Cadenhead)

70cl, 46%
Bunnahabhain

A tasty bit of Islay single malt here from the Bunnahabhain distillery, matured for 10 years in a pair of bourbon barrels - from 2005 to 2015. This is another delicious entry in WM Cadenhead's Small…  More info

Bunnahabhain 10 Year Old 2005 - Small Batch (WM Cadenhead)

Bruichladdich High Noon - Feis Ile 2015

50cl, 48.7%
Bruichladdich

Bruichladdich's Fèis Ìle 2015 release was the High Noon Black Art Valinch (in keeping with the theme of that year - Hoe Down!). It's a rather mysterious release, with very little known about the…  More info

Bruichladdich High Noon - Feis Ile 2015

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