Classic of Islay is actually the program here. This is a classic Islay whisky that smells of smoke. It's not a smoky stinker, there's no rubber involved, there's no sulfur involved. If you don't like smoky whiskys, you won't be able to do anything with the Classic of Islay - for everyone else it's actually a wonderful Islay fragrance. This is nothing fancy, outstanding, extraordinary - this is Islay for sipping and enjoying. The smoke is warm and sweet, it doesn't smoke or soot, but a few stalks of kelp got into the fire and the wood sat in the salt water for a while. Maritime peat that burns well, partially fermented fruits in the delicious fermentation stage with enough residual sweetness, trail mix with dark raisins.
The whisky is 55.3% vol. bottled and can be drunk exactly in this cask strength. The alcohol is actually well integrated, it doesn't burn and it doesn't suppress the aromas. Of course you can add water, but you don't have to. And here, too, it's a classic taste that doesn't have to be dissected, that's not outstanding. But it's not too young and burning, not bitter, not mushy. There is a delicious cocoa note with enough fruit jam and nut butter. In addition, there is the maritime smoke with tobacco and kelp.
Smoke and ash are conched with bourbon vanilla sugar, nougat cream and good cocoa to create a finely tart chocolate.
Now, not everyone likes smoky whisky. That's ok, but somehow also incomprehensible. Because this Classic of Islay is such a wonderful sipper, a whisky that you can simply sip away, that is powerful and sustainable, but also completely uncomplicated, round and simply delicious. If this really is Lagavulin, what are they doing wrong with their own bottlings? Ok, it doesn't arise - Diageo isn't about whisky, it's about profitability. It's good that whiskys like the Classic of Islay still exist.