Lp4 (Elements of Islay)

"Powerful and balanced, exactly how I like my Laphroaigs, interesting and complex. and compliments to the folks of Speciality Drinks, just lovely stuff"

(Photo from Whiskybase)

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The folks of Speciality Drinks/Elixir have the whole of the Islay periodic table in their chemistry cabinet. Laphroaig cannot be left out, obviously, and we have a good one in this review. A marriage of a singel Oloroso sherry butt and three bourbon barrels. The odds might be slightly against the sherry. This Lp4 is very hard to find, but the other member of the Lp-series all have excellent ratings. I think we are already at Lp8. So far, I found all of the Elements of Islay releases that I have tasted excellent (more reviews following soon!).

Nose

This is full of smoked sherry. A classic example of how this should be: forceful, but balanced and complex. It is nutty, there is probably some tcp (I never smelled the actual stuff, but I could imagine is something like this), smoke, and bandages. It is rather chemical, which perfectly is in line with the bottle design. A hint of acetic acid, drops of lemon juice, some sun-heated sand, a whiff of chlorine or fluor, and burned apple pie in the background, and of course whiffs of sea air. There is probably more, but we have to stop somewhere, don’t we?

Taste

Oh yes, the taste is very complex and the sherry is nicely integrated into the smoke and bandages. Wonderfully dirty with mud, scruffy roots, smoked raisins, and something like licking polished wood (I never did that, really). There are also several vegetables, difficult to pin down, but probably some cabbages. This keeps lingering on the tongue for a long time. Then come lots of liquorice roots. And almond paste, oh I like it. The one sherry cask must have been forceful for it to be contained by three bourbon equivalents, and still the sherry is sitting on the front row, no bourbon influence detectable.

Overall

This is how I like my Laphroaigs. Powerful and balanced. Interesting and complex. These were some well selected casks and they have been well put together. Compliments to the folks of Speciality Drinks (or should I now say Elixir?). Just lovely stuff.

  • Review 2018-015
  • Single malt
  • Laphroaig
  • Speciality Drinks
  • Unknown distillation year
  • Bottled 2013
  • A first-fill Oloroso sherry butt and three bourbon barrels
  • Natural colour
  • Non-chill filtered
  • 54.8
  • Undisclosed number of bottles
  • ±135-160
  • Not available anymore
  • Whiskybase #45025

What others say

Whiskybase: 89.14 (61 votes) * @Diffordsguide: 4.5/5 * Serge Valentin @Whiskyfun: 90/100
Read for yourself

Thanks for sharing the sample,

Scores

these are my personal views, so do not take them too seriously… nothing beats tasting these for yourself •

Cask influence
55%
Peat/smoke
70%
  • Smoke
  • Bandages
  • Mud
Nose 88%
Taste 88.5%
Balance 87.5%
Depth 88%
Finish 86.5%
Score