Lagavulin 25 Year Old (200th Anniversary) was released in 2016 as part of the celebrations for the distillery’s anniversary, and lists all the managers over that time on the bottle. It’s aged exclusively in Sherry casks, and released at cask strength. 8000 bottles worldwide.
Colour: Rich dark golden amber, the rusty depths of autumn.
Nose: Powerful, rich, deep, and lively. There’s deep chocolaty raisin notes amongst spadefuls of rich smoked fruitcake (Why can’t I get one of those? That’d be amazing!). The peat is very much tamed here, to more of a relaxing evening ember of a dying fire by the sea. Sweet cured bacon notes pop out at you. Old waxed antique oak in the background.
Palate: Massively thick and oily, it’s surprisingly easy going and smooth, although the Sherry oak spices start to build soon enough. There’s sweet fruitcake notes, but also an underlying freshness too. After all the years of aging there are still glorious malty tones all over your palate which soon show a slow and respectful peaty smokiness underlining everything. There’s almost a rich tingle on your tongue.
Finish: The finish is all about balanced sweetness and savoury, there’s hints of bacon and syrup along with gentle heathery smoke. The coastal influence at this point fairly minimal, with just a slight saltiness at the end. No tannin overload here, and no spice overload either, some slight coal embers and a hint of oak at the end.