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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.

Smokehead - The Rock Edition

70cl, 43%
Smokehead

A very special, dramatic-looking edition of Smokehead single malt featuring a debossed "Smokehead Skull". Hugely peaty and very well-packaged!  More info

Smokehead - The Rock Edition
11
$36.66

Laphroaig 16 Year Old 2000 (cask 11303) - Old Particular (Douglas Laing) (La Maison du Whisky 60th Anniversary)

70cl, 53.9%
Laphroaig

A single cask bottling of 16 year old Laphroaig, distilled in 2000 and bottled in August 2016 by the chaps from Douglas Laing for their Old Particular range. 315 bottles of this tasty Islay whisky…  More info

Laphroaig 16 Year Old 2000 (cask 11303) - Old Particular (Douglas Laing) (La Maison du Whisky 60th Anniversary)
$200.24

Caol Ila 15 Year Old 2000 Unpeated (Special Release 2016)

70cl, 61.5%
Caol Ila

Another year and another excellent unpeated Caol Ila for the Special Releases. This is the first of these unusual Islay malts to have been distilled this millennium, being filled into refill American…  More info

Caol Ila 15 Year Old 2000 Unpeated (Special Release 2016)
$95.37

Laphroaig Select

70cl, 40%
Laphroaig

For the Laphroaig Select, the Islay distillery has taken whisky from a number of different types of cask, including Oloroso Sherry butts, white American oak, Pedro Ximenez seasoned hoggies, Quarter…  More info

Laphroaig Select
43
$38.69

Bruichladdich 8 Year Old - The Laddie Eight

70cl, 50%
Bruichladdich

An 8 year old single malt from Islay's Bruichladdich distillery, originally released for the Travel Retail Market. The Laddie Eight was created by Head Distiller Adam Hannett, with an aim to…  More info

Bruichladdich 8 Year Old - The Laddie Eight
$58.94

Bowmore 18 Year Old

70cl, 43%
Bowmore

A comparatively recent release from Bowmore, the 18 year old was launched in January of 2007 to replace the 17 year old. A perfumed, fruity offering from the Islay distillery.  More info

Bowmore 18 Year Old
18
$90.91

Laphroaig 12 Year Old 2004 (cask 13433) - Old Malt Cask (Hunter Laing)

70cl, 50%
Laphroaig

An indie bottling of Laphroaig single malt, which spent a dozen years maturing in a refill hogshead - from September 2004 to February 2017. Following that, the whisky was bottled by Hunter Laing as…  More info

Laphroaig 12 Year Old 2004 (cask 13433) - Old Malt Cask (Hunter Laing)
$117.12

Bruichladdich 21 Year Old 1994 (casks 776 & 777) - Cask Strength (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 56.2%
Bruichladdich

A Gordon & MacPhail Cask Strength bottling of 21 year old Bruichladdich single malt, aged in a pair of refill Sherry butts. This was distilled on Islay in October 1994 and left to mature until May…  More info

Bruichladdich 21 Year Old 1994 (casks 776 & 777) - Cask Strength (Gordon & MacPhail)
$117.12

Smokehead 18 Year Old Extra Black

70cl, 46%
Smokehead

A release of 6,000 bottles of 18 year old Smokehead, packaged smartly in an "extra black" bottle. Full bodied and rich.  More info

Smokehead 18 Year Old Extra Black
9
$126.45

Kilchoman Machir Bay Gift Pack with 2x Glasses

70cl, 46%
Kilchoman

A gift pack from the Kilchoman distillery on the west coast of Islay! This pack includes a 70cl bottle of their Machir Bay single malt (which is aged in a combination of ex-bourbon barrels and…  More info

Kilchoman Machir Bay Gift Pack with 2x Glasses
$55.18

Bruichladdich Organic Scottish Barley 1l

100cl, 50%
Bruichladdich

A travel retail release of Bruichladdich organic single malt Scotch whisky, made with barley sourced from Mid Coul Farm, Mains of Tullibardine Farm and Coulmore farm. It's an unpeted expression,…  More info

Bruichladdich Organic Scottish Barley 1l
5
$79.55

Bowmore 25 Year Old 1989 (cask 10581) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 55.1%
Bowmore

A Douglas Laing bottling of 25 year old Bowmore single malt Scotch whisky, matured in a single refill hogshead cask. Back in the November 1989, this whisky was distillery on the isle of Islay and…  More info

Bowmore 25 Year Old 1989 (cask 10581) -  Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
$313.47

Bowmore Small Batch - Bourbon Cask Matured

70cl, 40%
Bowmore

Bowmore Small Batch is an elegant Islay single malt, when gets matured in both first-fill and second-fill bourbon barrels. A great introduction to Bowmore's lovely smoky flavour profile - the Small…  More info

Bowmore Small Batch - Bourbon Cask Matured
14
$39.75

Caol Ila 33 Year Old 1984 (cask 11620) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 49.8%
Caol Ila

Cor, a 33 year old Caol Ila single malt drawn from a single cask! This impressive whisky was distilled on the Isle of Islay in January 1984 and matured in a refill hogshead until February 2017 before…  More info

Caol Ila 33 Year Old 1984 (cask 11620) - Xtra Old Particular (Douglas Laing)
$348.53

Bruichladdich 10 Year Old - The Laddie Ten Second Limited Edition

70cl, 50%
Bruichladdich

A second limited edition release of 10 year old unpeated single malt whisky from the Bruichladdich distillery on the Isle of Islay, released in the latter half of 2016. This expression was drawn from…  More info

Bruichladdich 10 Year Old - The Laddie Ten Second Limited Edition
$56.90

Laphroaig QA Cask 1l

100cl, 40%
Laphroaig

A litre bottling of Laphroaig's QA Cask single malt Scotch whisky, which is initially matured in ex-bourbon barrels before ensuring a finishing period in charred American white oak casks. With this…  More info

Laphroaig QA Cask 1l
8
$61.90

Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2009

70cl, 50%
Bruichladdich

It's the 2009 vintage of Bruichladdich's popular Islay Barley single malt Scotch whisky! We love that Bruichladdich specify which farms the barley came from for these releases - this time, the barley…  More info

Bruichladdich Islay Barley 2009
1
$48.37

Bowmore Legend

70cl, 40%
Bowmore

A young, rather gentle Bowmore. Whilst not massively complex or full-bodied, Legend is still a great value for money malt.  More info

Bowmore Legend
19
$27.62

Bowmore 15 Year Old Darkest

70cl, 43%
Bowmore

A 15 year old released in January of 2007 from the legendary Bowmore distillery in Islay. This single malt has enjoyed maturation in Oloroso sherry casks.  More info

Bowmore 15 Year Old Darkest
32
$62.21

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)
$122.39

Octomore 07.3 5 Year Old

70cl, 63%
Bruichladdich

Bruichladdich distillery's range of insanely peated single malts continues with this 63% abv 07.3 release, made with 169 phenolic parts per million. That's an awful lot, more than any normal 'heavily…  More info

Octomore 07.3 5 Year Old
2
$153.19

Bruichladdich Octomore 07.4 7 Year Old Virgin Oak

70cl, 61.2%
Bruichladdich

An early 2016 release of Bruichladdich's extremely peaty Octomore series. Octomore 07.4 has endured quite an interesting maturation - 25% of it was aged entirely in virgin oak casks, while 75% of it…  More info

Bruichladdich Octomore 07.4 7 Year Old Virgin Oak
5
$154.38

Bowmore Vault Edition First Release

70cl, 51.5%
Bowmore

The first release in Bowmore's Vault Edition series, launched in 2016. This series will explore four of the characteristics found in Bowmore's whiskies after maturing in their No.1 Vaults maturation…  More info

Bowmore Vault Edition First Release
1
$94.70

Caol Ila 2004 (bottled 2016) - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 46%
Caol Ila

An indie Islay from Gordon & MacPhail's Connoisseurs Choice range here - it's a 2004 vintage single malt from the Caol Ila distillery, bottled in 2016 at 46% ABV.  More info

Caol Ila 2004 (bottled 2016) - Connoisseurs Choice (Gordon & MacPhail)
$45.18

Octomore 10 Year Old - Second Limited Edition

70cl, 57.3%
Bruichladdich

A limited edition second release of 10 year old Octomore single malt Scotch whisky from Islay's Bruichladdich distillery. The name of the game here is peat - all of the Octomore whiskies are super…  More info

Octomore 10 Year Old - Second Limited Edition
$173.76

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