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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.

Laphroaig 16 Year Old 1995 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

70cl, 60%
Laphroaig

A big, punchy cask-strength Laphroaig bottled by Signatory as part of their Single Cask Series.  More info

Laphroaig 16 Year Old 1995 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory)

Bruichladdich 17 Year Old Fino Sherry

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

This Bruichladdich was matured in bourbon barrels before a finish in Fino sherry casks. Part of an outturn of 6,000 bottles.  More info

Bruichladdich 17 Year Old Fino Sherry
$58.77

Bruichladdich First Growth Cuvée C: Margaux (Chateau Margaux) 16 Year Old

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

Your chance to taste Bruichladdich with the added finesse of a First Growth wine from Bordeaux - France's sexiest wine region! This is the third release, 'Cuvée C' which was finished in Chateau…  More info

Bruichladdich First Growth Cuvée C: Margaux (Chateau Margaux) 16 Year Old
3

Bunnahabhain 33 Year Old 1979 - The Octave (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 52.4%
Bunnahabhain

A beautiful single cask Bunnahabhain from Duncan Taylor's Octave cask range. This was distilled in 1979 and finished in smaller "Octave" casks, the result of which is an increased maturation and…  More info

Bunnahabhain 33 Year Old 1979 - The Octave (Duncan Taylor)

Bowmore 40 Year Old 1970 - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)

70cl, 43.2%
Bowmore

What a very handsome and shiny wooden box this comes in. Behold it and marvel at its fine craftsmanship. The whisky contained within was distilled on the 15th September 1970 and aged for 40 years in…  More info

Bowmore 40 Year Old 1970 - Cask Strength Collection Rare Reserve (Signatory)

Kilchoman Single Cask Release - Distillery Only

70cl, 61.7%
Kilchoman

A distillery-only release from Kilchoman Feis Ile 2012. It's a single cask malt matured in a bourbon cask from Buffalo Trace.  More info

Kilchoman Single Cask Release - Distillery Only
1
$127.24

Caol Ila 30 Year Old 1980 (Celtic Heartlands)

70cl, 51.9%
Caol Ila

A single cask, cask strength Caol Ila aged for a whopping 30 years. Chosen by Bruichladdich's Jim McEwan and bottled as part of his Celtic Heartland's range.  More info

Caol Ila 30 Year Old 1980 (Celtic Heartlands)

Laphroaig 11 Year Old 2001 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 50%
Laphroaig

This was distilled at the Laphroaig distillery in February 2001 and aged for 11 years in a refill hogshead before bottling in April of 2012. This was a release of 289 bottles from Douglas Laing's Old…  More info

Laphroaig 11 Year Old 2001 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

Bowmore 28 Year Old 1982 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 50.8%
Bowmore

A single cask, cask strength Bowmore from Duncan Taylor's Rare Auld range. This was distilled in October 1982 and aged for 28 years in cask 85213 before bottling in September of 2011. A release of…  More info

Bowmore 28 Year Old 1982 - Rare Auld (Duncan Taylor)

Kilchoman Spring 2011 Release

70cl, 46%
Kilchoman

Released in Spring of 2011, this is the 6th official release from Kilchoman, and it was created by vatting three and four year old casks of whisky (all first and refill bourbon).  More info

Kilchoman Spring 2011 Release
$48.93

Laphroaig 18 Year Old 1993 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Laphroaig

This is an eighteen year old Laphroaig from Douglas Laing's Old Malt Cask series, this is a limited release and packs plenty of Laphroaig medicinality into one bottle. The Old Malt Cask range…  More info

Laphroaig 18 Year Old 1993 - Old Malt Cask (Douglas Laing)

Bruichladdich 17 Year Old (Alchemist)

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

17 year old from the Alchemist range. This was distilled at the Bruichladdich distillery - so we're expecting lots of fruity, coastal flavour.  More info

Bruichladdich 17 Year Old (Alchemist)
$64.72

Port Charlotte An Turas Mor

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

The first NAS release from Bruichladdich's Port Charlotte Brand. A superb balance of peat and smoke. Retains the intensity of other Port Charlotte releases without compromise.  More info

Port Charlotte An Turas Mor
5
$37.54

Bruichladdich Sherry Classic Fusion

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

Sherry Classic Fusion is a bourbon matured Bruichladdich single malt, finished in sherry casks from Fernando de Castilla.  More info

Bruichladdich Sherry Classic Fusion
2

Wemyss Smokehouse 1996 (Caol Ila)

70cl, 46%
Caol Ila

A very peaty Caol Ila from Wemyss Malts, who favour evocative names for their releases, this being no exception. Smokiness abounds and this is a great dram for those in search of phenolic excellence.  More info

Wemyss Smokehouse 1996 (Caol Ila)
$57.70

Bowmore 14 Year Old 1997 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory

70cl, 58.3%
Bowmore

Mmm… A delicious 14 year old Bowmore distilled on the 13th June 1997 and aged in hogshead 1904 before bottling on the 29th March 2012. A release of 316 numbered bottles from Signatory's Cask Strength…  More info

Bowmore 14 Year Old 1997 - Cask Strength Collection (Signatory

Lagavulin Feis Ile 2012

70cl, 55.1%
Lagavulin

Lagavulin's incredible 2012 Feis Ile release, a real favourite here with lots to discover.  More info

Lagavulin Feis Ile 2012
$318.18

Port Ellen - Batch 1 (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)

50cl, 48.2%
Port Ellen

This whisky is from the long-since closed distillery of Port Ellen and despite a whole bunch of distilleries sadly closing in the early 1980s Port Ellen remains one of the most highly regarded.…  More info

Port Ellen - Batch 1 (That Boutique-y Whisky Company)
1

Bruichladdich First Growth Cuvée B: Pauillac (Chateau Latour) 16 Year Old

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

A great Bruichladdich, this is part of their range of first growth Bordeaux finished whiskies. This is the second, Cuvée B, which was finished in Pauillac Casks from Chateau Latour!  More info

Bruichladdich First Growth Cuvée B: Pauillac (Chateau Latour) 16 Year Old

Caol Ila "Young & Feisty" - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Caol Ila

A small batch bottling from the Caol Ila distillery, aged for just a few years in a pair of refill hogsheads. This was bottled in Winter 2012 by Douglas Laing, who declare it to be "young and feisty"!  More info

Caol Ila

Bunnahabhain 25 Year Old 1986 - The Octave (Duncan Taylor)

70cl, 53.3%
Bunnahabhain

A beautiful cask-strength Bunnahabhain, distilled in 1986 and aged in standard casks before a finish in small "Octave" casks which give additional spice and complexity.  More info

Bunnahabhain 25 Year Old 1986 - The Octave (Duncan Taylor)

Bruichladdich Waves

70cl, 46%
Bruichladdich

A 2008 release from the Bruichladdich distillery and a light single malt. The name Waves suggests the notes of crisp, fresh fruits and a touch of light spice with a touch of typical 'Laddie coastal…  More info

Bruichladdich Waves
8
$32.03

Bowmore MacBeatha - 4th Edition

70cl, 60.3%
Bowmore

A Bowmore from Kilchoman? Sort of... Kilchoman uses the MacBeatha name to market their single cask bottlings from other Islay distilleries. This is the fourth edition in the range, a single cask…  More info

Bowmore MacBeatha - 4th Edition
$92.29

Bowmore 1999 (Berry Bros. & Rudd)

70cl, 56.4%
Bowmore

Vintage Bowmore from 1999, bottled at Cask strength by Berry Brothers and Rudd.  More info

Bowmore 1999 (Berry Bros. & Rudd)
$52.98

Kilchoman 5 Year Old 2006

70cl, 46%
Kilchoman

A five year old release from Kilchoman, distilled in 2006. This is actually the first ever whisky of this age from the distillery, 80% aged in first fill bourbon and 20% in refill bourbon. A limited…  More info

Kilchoman 5 Year Old 2006
1
$51.40

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