A 1996 vintage single cask whisky from Laphroaig, distilled on 26th November, matured in a hogshead for 4 days shy of 16 years and then bottled on 22nd November 2012 by Signatory for their Cask Strength Collection.
In our humble opinion there's little better than a mid-teen Laphroaig at full strength from a refill or plain cask, so we're getting a bit hot under the collar about this plain hogshead 'Froyg 1996 from indie heroes Signatory.
A special single cask edition of 1996 Springbank bottled at full strength for British wine merchants Oddbins. A hugely characterful dram showing stewed fruit and some beefy, meaty notes. The fact that 588 bottles were yielded from the cask suggests this was likely to have been a sherry butt.
A Springbank Society bottling of the distillery's peaty whisky - Longrow. Distilled in June 1996, matured for 12 years in a Fino sherry but and then bottled at cask strength in April 2009, a few months shy of its 13th birthday. An interesting dram, with the fino wood adding different notes to the more usual dark sherry casks.
Bottled in 2009 as part of the not-altogether-uncontroversial Manager's Choice series, this Strathmill is one of the more interesting bottlings in the series, as one of only a tiny handful of official bottlings from this very obscure distillery, most of whose output goes into the J&B blend.
Bottled by Diageo as part of their Managers' Choice series of single cask bottlings from each of their distilleries, this Glen Spey 1996 is creamy and nutty, with hints of coconut betraying its new American oak maturation. Best consumed neat.
Benrinnes is another Diageo distillery of which very little is seen. Most of the malt produced at Benrinnes is used as blend fodder, so it's great to see a debut single cask bottling to sit alongside the Flora & Fauna version and 2009's acclaimed Special Release 23yo.
A remarkably dark 12yo Knockando 1996 bottled at full strength from a sherry cask (surely a first-fill) for the Managers' Choice series. It's fair to say that this will likely be somewhat more intense than the standard 12yo.
A very rare bottling of Caol Ila, originally produced for sale at the distillery during Feis Ile, the Islay festival of Malt and Music, in 2009. Bottled from a single sherry cask at cask strength after about 13 years in wood.