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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 14 Year Old 2002 (cask 12765) - Old Malt Cask (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 50%
Bowmore

A Hunter Laing bottling of 14 year old Bowmore, aged in a single cask from September 2002 to October 2016. 341 bottles were produced, bottled as part of the Old Malt Cask range.  More info

Bowmore 14 Year Old 2002 (cask 12765) - Old Malt Cask (Hunter Laing)
$80.10

Ardbeg Dark Cove 2016 - Committee Release

70cl, 55%
Ardbeg

Released in 2016, this Committee Release of Dark Cove was matured in ex-bourbon and "dark Sherry casks" for "The Darkest Ardbeg Ever". Whilst the colour isn't actually that dark at all, those dark…  More info

Ardbeg Dark Cove 2016 - Committee Release
$258.74

Laphroaig 14 Year Old 2001 (cask 372) - Benchmark (Murray McDavid)

70cl, 46%
Laphroaig

An excellent indie Islay here from Murray McDavid's ace Benchmark range. One of a trio of 14 year old Laphroaig bottling, this one was drawn from cask #372, a first fill bourbon barrel that held the…  More info

Laphroaig 14 Year Old 2001 (cask 372) - Benchmark (Murray McDavid)
$118.99

Bruichladdich Organic Futures 7 Year Old 2003

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

Released as part of Bruichladdich's Futures collection (we've had a few rare bottles from this range in before - see here and here), this is an organic single malt distilled in December 2003 using…  More info

Bruichladdich Organic Futures 7 Year Old 2003
$206.98

Laphroaig PX Cask Triple Matured

100cl, 48%
Laphroaig

The Laphroaig PX Cask is made with whisky matured in three types of cask - American oak casks, Quarter casks and the titular Pedro Ximénez casks. This leads to a flavour profile which ties together…  More info

Laphroaig PX Cask Triple Matured
8
$92.32

Bowmore 21 Year Old 1991 President's Selection Keizo Saji's Cask

70cl, 55.5%
Bowmore

A rare Bowmore here that was given to employees of Morrison Bowmore in 2012 after the former president of Suntory Mr Keizo Saji's kindly donated the cask to them. The single Sherry cask was…  More info

Bowmore 21 Year Old 1991 President's Selection Keizo Saji's Cask
$1,444.07

Bruichladdich 23 Year Old 1990 Black Art 04.1

70cl, 49.2%
Bruichladdich

The fourth release of the legendary Bruichladdich Black Art whisky. With the recipe a mystery to everyone apart from the creator, it's still a cryptic enigma.  More info

Bruichladdich 23 Year Old 1990 Black Art 04.1
10
$206.00

Kilchoman 7 Year Old 2008

70cl, 46%
Kilchoman

A very special Kilchoman release - their first ever 7 year old! Distilled in July 2008, it was matured in American oak ex-bourbon barrels up until August 2015 when this limited vintage vatting was…  More info

Kilchoman 7 Year Old 2008
2
$68.27

Bowmore 34 Year Old 1971

70cl, 51%
Bowmore

A cask strength 34 year old single malt from Bowmore. This was distilled in 1971 and matured in ex-sherry casks before bottling as part of an outturn of just 960 bottles. The colour is rich and dark…  More info

Bowmore 34 Year Old 1971

Caol Ila 2003 (bottled 2015) Moscatel Cask Finish - Distillers Edition

70cl, 43%
Caol Ila

It's the 2003 vintage Caol Ila Distillers Edition single malt Scotch whisky, which has been finished in casks which previously held Moscatel wine. It was distilled in 2003 and bottled in 2015 at 43%…  More info

Caol Ila 2003 (bottled 2015) Moscatel Cask Finish - Distillers Edition
2
$75.20

The Ships Decanter 1991 (bottled 2016) - Wemyss Malts (Bunnahabhain)

70cl, 45.6%
Bunnahabhain

Independently bottled Bunnahabhain, aged in a hogshead cask from 1991 to 2016. This is another delicious Wemyss Malts bottling, which has been given the name 'The Ships Decanter', hinting towards the…  More info

The Ships Decanter 1991 (bottled 2016) - Wemyss Malts (Bunnahabhain)
$119.77

Ardbeg 25 Year Old 1991 - Old & Rare (Hunter Laing) Magnum (1.5L)

150cl, 51.9%
Ardbeg

Well then, this is pretty bloomin' awesome, isn't it? A 1.5 litre magnum bottle of 25 year old Ardbeg single malt, independently bottled by Hunter Laing for their Old & Rare range. The refill…  More info

Ardbeg 25 Year Old 1991 - Old & Rare (Hunter Laing) Magnum (1.5L)
$3,101.33

Ardbog (Ardbeg)

70cl, 52.1%
Ardbeg

A limited edition Ardbeg released during the Fèis Ìle whisky festival. Aged in a combination of bourbon as well as some Manzanilla sherry casks, it was produced for 'Ardbog Day', which was celebrated…  More info

Ardbog (Ardbeg)
14
$155.23

Ma1 - Elements Of Islay (Margadale)

50cl, 54.2%
Bunnahabhain

This is the first bottling of "Ma" single malt whisky from the Elements of Islay range - it's peated whisky from a particular distillery located on the north-east of Islay.  More info

Ma1 - Elements Of Islay (Margadale)

Lagavulin 10 Year Old 2005 - Single Cask (Master of Malt)

70cl, 56.1%
Lagavulin

Single Cask Series Lagavulin! That's right, we bottled this single malt Scotch whisky from the south coast of Islay on 21st January 2016 after it spent 10 years (a week shy of 11 years, in fact) in a…  More info

Lagavulin 10 Year Old 2005 - Single Cask (Master of Malt)
1
$146.94

Bowmore 26 Year Old 1988 - Feis Ile 2015

70cl, 48.3%
Bowmore

Matured in selected ex-Sherry casks and bottled at cask strength, this is a special Fèis Ìle 2015 release from Bowmore. This bottle was part of a private collection - if you'd like more detailed…  More info

Bowmore 26 Year Old 1988 - Feis Ile 2015
$1,030.00

Laphroaig 14 Year Old 2001 (cask 365) - Benchmark (Murray McDavid)

70cl, 46%
Laphroaig

One of a trio of 14 year old single cask Laphroaig bottlings from Murray McDavid's Benchmark range - this one was matured in bourbon barrel number #365 from 2001 to October 2015. A release of 170…  More info

Laphroaig 14 Year Old 2001 (cask 365) - Benchmark (Murray McDavid)
$118.99

Bruichladdich Rocks

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

A single malt from Islay's Bruichladdich distillery, made with a selection of unpeated whiskies of various vintages from their maturing warehouses and finished in French red wine casks.  More info

Bruichladdich Rocks
1
$62.14

Bruichladdich 25 Year Old 1990 (cask 141) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 58%
Bruichladdich

Cask strength Bruichladdich! This 25 year old Islay single malt was distilled back in September 1990 and left to age in a single refill butt until November 2015, when it was bottled with an outturn…  More info

Bruichladdich 25 Year Old 1990 (cask 141) - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)
$154.97

Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2007

70cl, 50%
Bruichladdich

Made from barley harvested at Rockside Farm, Islay, in 2006 and distilled in 2007. The specially selected grain, the slow distillation and carefully considered casks were vital in creating this…  More info

Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2007
7
$51.71

Bunnahabhain 13 Year Old 2002 (cask 3056) - Cask Collection (A. D. Rattray)

70cl, 57.7%
Bunnahabhain

13 year old Bunnahabhain single malt, aged in a single bourbon hogshead from October 2002 to July 2016. After its maturation, this was independently bottled by A. D. Rattray with an outturn of 301…  More info

Bunnahabhain 13 Year Old 2002 (cask 3056) - Cask Collection (A. D. Rattray)
$80.13

Lagavulin 25 Year Old - 200th Anniversary Edition

70cl, 51.7%
Lagavulin

Limited to 8,000 bottles, this special 25 year old Lagavulin celebrates the distillery's 200th anniversary with a well-matured expression matured exclusively in ex-Sherry casks and with the names of…  More info

Lagavulin 25 Year Old - 200th Anniversary Edition
3
$828.09

Caol Ila 34 Year Old 1980 (cask 4962) - Mackillop's Choice

70cl, 53%
Caol Ila

34 year old single malt Scotch whisky from the Caol Ila distillery, bottled as part of the Mackillop's Choice range - an excellent choice, chaps! This Islay single malt was distilled in May 1980 and…  More info

Caol Ila 34 Year Old 1980 (cask 4962) - Mackillop's Choice

Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2008

70cl, 50%
Bruichladdich

A travel retail Bruichladdich single malt Scotch whisky, made with Bere barley, which has a much lower yield than other varieties. For the 2008 vintage Bere Barley Bruichladdich (a phrase which…  More info

Bruichladdich Bere Barley 2008
2
$60.83

Caol Ila 12 Year Old 2004 - A Rare Find (Gleann Mór)

70cl, 57.1%
Caol Ila

12 year old Caol Ila single malt, independently bottled by the chaps from Gleann Mór. It was distilled in February 2004 on the Isle of Islay and bottled in July 2016 for the A Rare Find range. 209…  More info

Caol Ila 12 Year Old 2004 - A Rare Find (Gleann Mór)
$65.87

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