Lagavulin 1991 21 Years (Bot. 2012) #1964



Lagavulin 1991 21 Years (Bot. 2012) , another Lagavulin in the 2012 Special Releases line-up, joining the ever present 12 year old. This is a much more limited edition 21 year old bottling, matured in first fill ex-sherry European oak casks filled in 1991. This has had quite a bit of buzz about it and we expect it to live up to the pedigree.


Everybody remembers the massive 21yo 1985, an absolute wonder that had everything in my opinion. So…

Colour: pale amber.

Nose: I think it’s a gentler, cleaner, more civilised version w.r.t. the old 21. The sherry isn’t as big and there are many rather refined and elegant herbal notes instead, starting with mint, pine resin and camphor. It’s after two or three minutes that the complexity of it all starts to be more obvious, with first many dried fruits (first raisins, then maybe sliced apples) and bags of tiny phenolic notes such as lamp oil, putty, carbolineum, anti-rust paint and just a little gunpowder. Leather polish.

With water: it’s the tobacco that comes out. Lit cigarettes, shoe polish and sultanas. Dates spirit (some kind of arrak).

Mouth (neat): once again, it’s probably not as thick and heavy as the older 21. We’re rather more on tobacco, lemon marmalade and pepper at first sips, with some bitter herbs in the background. Bitters, ginger… It’s even quite smooth, with a slightly syrupy honeyness. Cloves, juniper berries… It’s also fairly spicy indeed.

With water: more, much more dark chocolate and pepper, as well as quite some toffee and ‘dry’ Demerara sugar. Becomes drier and fino-ish. Finish: long, on tobacco, walnuts, chocolate, coffee and, to make it more ‘coastal’, something such as samphires. Comments: not as ‘in-your-face’ as the old one, rather less impressive in a way, more civilised and, as expected, of very high quality. Also more directly linked to the 16yo than the previous one. SGP:467 - 91 points.


Distillery Lagavulin
Classification Single Malt Whisky
Bottle No./Released 1964/2772
Vintage 1991
Age 21
Bottler Official Bottling
Bottling Date 2012
ABV/ Volume 52.0%/ 70cl
Rating/SGP 91/467
Cask Number -



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