Laphroaig Cairdeas Ileach Edition / Feis Ile 2011

Sometimes referred to as the most richly flavoured of all Scotch whiskies, Laphroaig is one of the most iconic island distilleries. With its smoky and iodine flavours, Laphroaig embodies the Islay identity.

Although the exact etymology isn’t known, Laphroaig is said to mean “broad hollow by the bay” in Gaelic. This references its location, a small basin on Islay’s southern coast. However, it officially operated under the business name of D. Johnston & Co throughout most of its history after Donald and Alexander Johnston, who in 1815 founded their distillery on the island’s south coast.

Cairdeas, pronounced [car-chuss] means "friendship" in Gaelic. These are released annually as distillery exclusives and for the Friends of Laphroaig group. Some early releases were labelled as Feis Ile exclusives and although this is no longer expressly stated, due to the time of year in which they become available, they are still considered as spiritual Feis Ile releases.

This particular Cairdeas release was named the Ileach (Gaelic for ‘native of Islay’) Edition after John Campbell gained the position of Master Distiller, the first Islay native to hold this position at Laphroaig.

    Nose:    Bourbon influence, vanilla, peat, smoky, ocean breeze, salt water.

    Taste:    Light bodied, layers of peat, baked pear, vanilla.

    Finish:    Long finish, seaweed, a few bitter oak notes with natural caramels and peaty spices.