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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 10 Year Old 35cl

35cl, 40%
Laphroaig

A half bottle of the iconic, medicinal 10 year Islay's bestselling distillery, Laphroaig. This is a massive, punchy dram, it is said the medicinal character is from the high moss content in the peat.  More info

Laphroaig 10 Year Old 35cl
5
$23.90

Islay Storm

70cl, 40%
C.S. James and Sons Ltd.

An Islay single malt from a secret distillery, Islay Storm has loads of peaty character.  More info

Islay Storm
21
$25.93

Bowmore 9 Year Old

70cl, 40%
Bowmore

Released in 2016, this is a well-Sherried single malt from the Bowmore distillery on the Isle of Islay. Whiskies matured in both bourbon and Sherry casks were used for this release, and Bowmore's…  More info

Bowmore 9 Year Old
15
$25.93

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
$26.96

The Ileach Peaty

70cl, 40%
Highlands and Islands Whisky Company

The Ileach is a peaty single malt from a secret Islay distillery, this has received rave reviews from whisky critics and has a solid core of peat and malt.  More info

The Ileach Peaty
42
$31.01

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old - The MacPhail's Collection (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 43%
Bunnahabhain

An 8 year old Bunnahabhain, an Islay single malt from the smart-looking, newly packaged MacPhail's Collection.  More info

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old - The MacPhail's Collection (Gordon & MacPhail)
4
$33.51

Caol Ila 18 Year Old 1997 - Cask Series Five (The Whisky Lounge)

20cl, 40%
Caol Ila

An independent bottling of 18 year old single malt from Islay's excellent Caol Ila distillery, drawn from a pair of cask and bottled at cask strength by The Whisky Lounge folks! 600 of these 20cl…  More info

Caol Ila 18 Year Old 1997 - Cask Series Five (The Whisky Lounge)
$33.77

Bunnahabhain 2006 (bottled 2015) - The MacPhail's Collection (Gordon & MacPhail)

70cl, 43%
Bunnahabhain

A rather splendid indie bottling of single malt Scotch whisky from the Bunnahabhain distillery, bottled for the MacPhail's Collection by Gordon & MacPhail. It was distilled on the Isle of Islay in…  More info

Bunnahabhain 2006 (bottled 2015) - The MacPhail's Collection (Gordon & MacPhail)
2
$33.91

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
42
$35.33

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old 2008 - Single Minded (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 43%
Bunnahabhain

A Douglas Laing Single Minded bottling of 8 year old single malt from Islay's Bunnahabhain distillery, drawn from a single hogshead which was filled in June 2008 and emptied in September 2016.  More info

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old 2008 - Single Minded (Douglas Laing)
$35.77

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
$35.78

Bowmore 12 Year Old

70cl, 40%
Bowmore

The heart of the Bowmore range, the 12 year old exhibits some beautiful coastal notes with a gentle peat, it is the balance that the floral element presents that makes this a great entry bottling for…  More info

Bowmore 12 Year Old
70
$36.24

Smokey Joe Islay Malt

70cl, 46%
The Leading Scotch Whisky Co. Ltd

A blended malt made up of different Islay single malt whiskies. We're not sure which ones, exactly, but we do know that it tastes delicious!  More info

Smokey Joe Islay Malt
15
$36.71

Laphroaig 10 Year Old

70cl, 40%
Laphroaig

Really smoky and iodine rich. This has to be one of Scotland's most characterful drams. Laphroaig are known for their medicinal malts, and the classic 10 year old is no exception.  More info

Laphroaig 10 Year Old
262
$37.28

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
12
$38.80

Bunnahabhain 12 Year Old

70cl, 46.3%
Bunnahabhain

This entry level Bunnahabhain bottling comes in a redesigned bottle. This 12 year old is lightly peated for an Islay single malt and consequently is a light, fresh dram. Now at the higher strength of…  More info

Bunnahabhain 12 Year Old
90
$39.26

Caol Ila 12 Year Old

70cl, 43%
Caol Ila

This 12 year old is the entry level bottling from the Caol Ila distillery, launched in June of 2002 this expression is light and fresh with that distinctive Caol Ila smoke.  More info

Caol Ila 12 Year Old
93
$39.49

Bruichladdich Scottish Barley - The Classic Laddie

70cl, 50%
Bruichladdich

Created by Jim McEwan from whisky matured in American oak casks alongside Lochindaal, and chosen to represent the classic, unpeated distillery style. Bruichladdich's new signature bottling is made…  More info

Bruichladdich Scottish Barley - The Classic Laddie
24
$40.48

Laphroaig Quarter Cask

70cl, 48%
Laphroaig

Released in 2004, this bottling was aged for around five years before being finished in a quarter cask for several months, the size of the cask is quite small, thus does not require such a long…  More info

Laphroaig Quarter Cask
134
$41.92

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)
$44.10

Kilchoman Machir Bay

70cl, 46%
Kilchoman

Kilchoman's Machir Bay is an excellent single malt Scotch whisky from the isle of Islay. The distillers use whisky which has been matured in ex-bourbon barrels and Oloroso Sherry butts, resulting in…  More info

Kilchoman Machir Bay
19
$44.79

Ardbeg 10 Year Old

70cl, 46%
Ardbeg

Jim Murray's 2008 World Whisky of the Year! When Ardbeg 10 was released it was the first expression from the distillery not to be chill-filtered. It's a true classic from Islay, and a must have for…  More info

Ardbeg 10 Year Old
237
$44.94

Caol Ila Moch

70cl, 43%
Caol Ila

Moch is Gaelic for dawn, and this release from Caol Ila is an altogether lighter prospect than the distillery's excellent 12 year old standard expression.  More info

Caol Ila Moch
9
$45.04

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old 2008 (cask 11561) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Bunnahabhain

An indie bottling of 8 year old Bunnahabhain single malt, distilled on the Isle of Islay in June 2008. Following its 8 year maturation in a single hogshead cask, this was bottled in November 2016 by…  More info

Bunnahabhain 8 Year Old 2008 (cask 11561) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)
$45.44

Caol Ila 5 Year Old 2011 (cask 11346) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)

70cl, 46%
Caol Ila

Indie Islay from Douglas Laing - this is a 5 year old bottling of single malt from the Caol Ila distillery, matured in a single refill hogshead from March 2011 to November 2016. 428 bottles were…  More info

Caol Ila 5 Year Old 2011 (cask 11346) - Provenance (Douglas Laing)
$47.22

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