Finlaggan Old Reserve
Strength: 40 %
You can be sure a whisky named "old reserve" is neither "old" nor "reserve". Similarly so for any of the following descriptors you may find adorning your bottles: fine, finest, rare, best, special, or classic.
In any case, I had read good reviews of this elusive young Islay and took the opportunity when in New York City to grab a bottle for $25. The nose hits you with huge peat, smoke, and iodine. The distillery of origin is a secret, but Lagavulin seems to be the most guessed on whisky forums. That seems a reasonable guess to me, as this definitely comes from heavily peated stock with significant medicinal / seaside character.
Finlaggan OR is similar to Bowmore Legend but with a touch more peat and smoke. It has the same faults: thin body, little complexity, and a finish that tastes like soggy cigarette ashes. But if you want a heavily-peated bottom-shelfer for your cabinet, this might be the best whisky going. 81 points (B-).
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