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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.

Port Charlotte 13 Year Old 2001 (cask R091600007) (Rest & Be Thankful)

70cl, 64.6%
Bruichladdich

A 13 year old Sherry cask-matured single malt here from Bruichladdich, released under their Port Charlotte name - meaning those of you that love a good peated expression will want a piece of this.…  More info

Port Charlotte 13 Year Old 2001 (cask R091600007) (Rest & Be Thankful)
$198.30

Laphroaig 9 Year Old 2005 (cask 0186) - The Coopers Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)

70cl, 46%
Laphroaig

It's an independently bottled Laphroaig single malt Scotch whisky, aged in a single cask for 9 years! This was distilled in 2005 and bottled in 2015 by the Vintage Malt Whisky Co. for their Coopers…  More info

Laphroaig 9 Year Old 2005 (cask 0186) - The Coopers Choice (The Vintage Malt Whisky Co.)
$51.46

Bruichladdich 25 Year Old 1991 (cask 11204) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 54.6%
Bruichladdich

A single cask bottling of Bruichladdich single malt Scotch whisky aged for a quarter of a century before being bottled by Douglas Laing. It was distilled on the Isle of Islay in May 1991, matured in…  More info

Bruichladdich 25 Year Old 1991 (cask 11204) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
$213.36

Bunnahabhain 30 Year Old 1980 (Rest & Be Thankful)

70cl, 40.2%
Bunnahabhain

Bunnahabhain single malt matured for three decades in a pair of ex-Sherry casks! The outturn was of 510 bottles in January 2016, having been filled back in May 1980.  More info

Bunnahabhain 30 Year Old 1980 (Rest & Be Thankful)
$378.31

Bunnahabhain 29 Year Old 1987 - A Rare Find (Gleann Mór)

70cl, 47.1%
Bunnahabhain

A Rare Find bottling from Gleann Mór here - 29 year old single malt from the Bunnahabhain distillery on the Isle of Islay, drawn from a single cask which housed the whisky from February 1987 to March…  More info

Bunnahabhain 29 Year Old 1987 - A Rare Find (Gleann Mór)
$188.41

Port Charlotte PC7

70cl, 61%
Bruichladdich

PC7 is a heavily peated release from the Bruichladdich distillery from the limited release Port Charlotte range. This bottle was part of a private collection - if you'd like more detailed info…  More info

Port Charlotte PC7
3
$227.92

Caol Ila 5 Year Old 2008 (cask 311913) - Artist #6 (La Maison du Whisky)

70cl, 61.5%
Caol Ila

"Aged over 5 years", the exact age of these releases is never immediately obvious, rounded down to the nearest 5 years as they always are. The distillation date of 2008 and bottling date in 2016…  More info

Caol Ila 5 Year Old 2008 (cask 311913) - Artist #6 (La Maison du Whisky)
$107.66

Bruichladdich Laddie 22 Year Old

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

Bruichladdich have launched a new range of whiskies which aim to create a signature style and move away from the often adventurous bottlings of the last ten years. This 22 year old forms the older of…  More info

Bruichladdich Laddie 22 Year Old

Lagavulin 12 Year Old 200th Anniversary (Special Release 2016)

70cl, 57.7%
Lagavulin

This year's 12 year old Lagavulin Special Release is part of the distillery's 200th anniversary celebrations! Aged in refill American oak hogsheads, it's the fourteenth of these excellent 12 year old…  More info

Lagavulin 12 Year Old 200th Anniversary (Special Release 2016)
2
$86.29

Haven Trail 1990 (bottled 2016) - Wemyss Malts (Bunnahabhain)

70cl, 46%
Bunnahabhain

A single cask bottling of Bunnahabhain single malt Scotch whisky, distilled in 1990, aged in a hogshead and bottled in 2016 by Wemyss Malts. As Wemyss often do, they've given it an evocative name to…  More info

Haven Trail 1990 (bottled 2016) - Wemyss Malts (Bunnahabhain)
1
$135.58

Octomore 6 Year Old 2009 (cask 2009004314) - Tempranillo Cask (Rest & Be Thankful)

70cl, 65.7%
Bruichladdich

Very well-peated single malt from Bruichladdich, bottled under their Octomore name by Rest & Be Thankful! This was distilled in November 2009 and aged for 6 years in a cask that previously held…  More info

Octomore 6 Year Old 2009 (cask 2009004314) - Tempranillo Cask (Rest & Be Thankful)
$218.80

Port Charlotte PC9

70cl, 59.2%
Bruichladdich

An incredibly limited release from Bruichladdich, this edition of the ferociously peaty Port Charlotte was aged for 9 years in American oak, and there are just 6,000 bottles This bottle was part…  More info

Port Charlotte PC9
1

Laphroaig Cairdeas (2008 Edition)

70cl, 55%
Laphroaig

Cairdeas derives from the Gaelic for 'Friendship', this is a rare cask strength edition from the Laphroaig distillery. This bottle was part of a private collection - if you'd like more detailed…  More info

Laphroaig Cairdeas (2008 Edition)
3

Caol Ila 7 Year Old 2008 - Strictly Limited (Càrn Mòr)

70cl, 46%
Caol Ila

Single malt from Islay distilled in 2008 and matured in two hogshead casks and bottled in 2016 by Càrn Mòr. The outturn was 760 bottles of peaty whisky.  More info

Caol Ila 7 Year Old 2008 - Strictly Limited (Càrn Mòr)
2

Bruichladdich Octomore 07.2 5 Year Old Scottish Barley

70cl, 58.5%
Bruichladdich

A Travel Retail bottling of Bruichladdich intensely-peated Octomore single malt Scotch whisky, which weighs in at a powerful 208 PPM. For the 07.2 release, this 5 year old whisky combines spirits…  More info

Bruichladdich Octomore 07.2 5 Year Old Scottish Barley
12
$145.02

Bunnahabhain Toiteach

70cl, 46%
Bunnahabhain

Toiteach is Gaelic for "Smoky", a hint of what's to come. That's right, a heavily peated Bunnahabhain! A great chance to try a smoky malt from a distiller of gentle, fruity Islay whisky.  More info

Bunnahabhain Toiteach
13
$62.12

Laphroaig Cairdeas 200th Anniversary Edition (2015)

70cl, 51.5%
Laphroaig

Released during Fèis Ìle 2015 and marking the distillery's 200th anniversary, for this special edition of Laphroaig Cairdeas Master Distiller John Campbell used 100% floor malted barley (from the…  More info

Laphroaig Cairdeas 200th Anniversary Edition (2015)
11
$233.10

Bunnahabhain 26 Year Old 1987 - Highland Laird (Bartels Whisky)

70cl, 51.1%
Bunnahabhain

A Highland Laird bottling of some rather well-aged Bunnahabhain single malt Scotch whisky! This was distilled in 1987, matured in a bourbon hogshead and bottled 26 years later by Bartels Whisky. The…  More info

Bunnahabhain 26 Year Old 1987 - Highland Laird (Bartels Whisky)

Caol Ila 5 Year Old 2010 (cask 11321) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Caol Ila

An indie bottling of 5 year old Caol Ila single malt, drawn from a refill hogshead which was filled on the Isle of Islay in December 2010 and emptied in August 2016. This is yet another tasty…  More info

Caol Ila 5 Year Old 2010 (cask 11321) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)
$47.66

Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2004

70cl, 50%
Bruichladdich

A 2004 vintage single malt from the Bruichladdich distillery, made using barley from one farm on the Isle of Islay - Kentraw Farm, only a mile away from the distillery! This bottle was part of a…  More info

Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2004
$103.57

Bowmore The Devil's Casks III - Double The Devil

70cl, 56.7%
Bowmore

When the folk of Bowmore formed an angry mob to chase the devil out of the church (which is of course round, offering him nowhere to hide), down the road and through the distillery, it was assumed…  More info

Bowmore The Devil's Casks III - Double The Devil
21
$155.39

Ardbeg Perpetuum - Bicentenary Committee Release

70cl, 49.2%
Ardbeg

The Ardbeg Committee edition of the distillery's bicentennial release - Perpetuum. Originally only available from the distillery itself! An accomplished blend of both young and old stock. This…  More info

Ardbeg Perpetuum - Bicentenary Committee Release
$259.06

Port Charlotte PC5

70cl, 63.5%
Bruichladdich

This was distilled by Bruichladdich in 2001 and aged for 5 years. Now incredibly rare, PC5 was the first in the incredible Port Charlotte range, some of the most heavily peated whisky from…  More info

Port Charlotte PC5

Port Charlotte PC12 Oilenach Furachail

70cl, 58.7%
Bruichladdich

A 12 year old peated whisky from Bruichladdich distillery, Oileanach furachail translates as something like 'attentive islander'. This is a reference to Adam Hannett's apprenticeship under Jim McEwan…  More info

Port Charlotte PC12 Oilenach Furachail
2
$112.86

Caol Ila 36 Year Old 1980 (cask 11491) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 57.4%
Caol Ila

36 year old single malt from the fantastic Caol Ila distillery on the Isle of Islay, drawn from a single refill hogshead which matured the whisky from September 1980 to November 2016. Only 172…  More info

Caol Ila 36 Year Old 1980 (cask 11491) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
$357.89

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