Laphroaig Offers Up A 30 Year Old Scotch Honoring A Founder - The Whiskey Wash

Laphroaig Offers Up A 30 Year Old Scotch Honoring A Founder

By Nino Marchetti / October 24, 2019

Scotland’s Laphroaig distillery is considered an extremely popular Scotch single malt whisky maker on Islay. Established in 1815 by the Johnston family, it is today owned by spirits giant Beam-Suntory. A long legacy of whisky making has happened here, and a new release from Laphroaig aims to honor one of those that was part of the founding clan.

The new Laphroaig Ian Hunter: Book One, according to those behind it, is set to be an annual series of super-premium whiskies honoring the legacy of Ian Hunter, said to be the last of the founding Johnston family. Non-chill filtered in nature, this 30 year old Scotch single malt whisky was aged in first-fill American barrels. The choice of cask type is a nod to Hunter, as it was his decision to introduce American white oak barrels into the maturation process at the distillery.

“If you visit the Laphroaig Distillery today it’s clear to see the impact of Ian Hunter through the practices and innovations that are still followed,” said John Campbell, Laphroaig distillery manager, in a prepared statement. “For good reason Ian is credited as the pioneer and innovator of this incredible whisky.  Without Ian, the Laphroaig we know today would not exist, so we have much to thank him for. It is this legacy that we celebrate throughout the series.”

Laphroaig Ian Hunter: Book One

Laphroaig Ian Hunter: Book One (image via Beam Suntory)

Book One is of a burnished gold color and bottled at a cask strength of 46.7% ABV. Price wise it drops in at £700, or around $885 USD. You’ll some official tasting notes below.

Nose: Sweet and medicinal with manuka honey, light peat smoke, cooked apple and rosemary vanilla. Orgeat syrup and a hint of lemon peel complete the aroma. 

Palate: Peaty and peppery with notes of herbs, cedar, kumquat zest and gorse flower. A sweetness of custard cream and vanilla pods. 

Finish: Coastal with subtle iodine, sea salt and seaweed notes. A touch of coffee and oaky character.