My final UK-centric post here. This comes as my duty-free purchase on the flight back (where I spent my entire layover in Switzerland running to catch my flight since the 1st was delayed). Anyway while there was a beautiful room of scotches, and multiple tastes tasting in the airport – I was sold the minute I saw the name Laphroaig next to a name (An Cuan Mor) that I did not know.
Let me just say that I find it equally annoying that because of this being so new – I could not find a nice transcript of the bottle/case and had to do it myself – which leads to my next point of damn son stop harping on and repeating yourself. Laphroaig you are your best when you are quiet – and let the spirit talk for you. There’s some poetry about life to that phrase, but let’s ignore it and move onto scotch.
What they Say: “Case Front: Literally translated as ‘Big Ocean’, An Cuan Mòr Whisky is a celebration of Laphroaig and their distillery on the edge of the Atlantic. Matured in ex-Bourbon barrels from ‘across the pond’ before being transferred to the finest European Oak and bottled. The result is an extraordinary fusion of flavours drawn from different continents – peat, caramel, apricot and raisin. The big ocean carries with it a big flavour.
Case Back: This unique expression has been hand selected by our Master Distiller for exceptional flavor, from our finest maturing casks. All batches have been matured in first fill ex-bourbon barrels in our warehouse right next to the Atlantic – hence the name Au Cuan Mor, or ‘Big Ocean’. This whisky is then carefully re-casked and left to sleep in the finest European oak. The result is an extraordinary fusion of flavours, from our unmistakable peat, to the soft and spicy caramel tones of the American wood, to the big, rich ‘burnt apricot and raisin’ of the European oak. Finally bottle and non chill-filtered. Please note that any cloudiness when mixed with water is normal for a whisky that hasn’t been chill-filtered.
Bottle Back: Inspired by the Atlantic upon which the Laphroaig distillery site, An Cuan Mor (‘Big Ocean’) is composed from a selection of many casks – each batch hand-selected for its exceptional flavour by our Master Distiller. All have been matured in first fill ex-bourbon barrels in Warehouse No. 1 – just a stone’s throw from breaking waves. This whisky is then carefully re-casked and left to sleep in the finest European Oak. The result is an extraordinary fusion of flavours, from our unmistakable peat our our spirit, to the soft and spicy caramel tones of the American wood, to the big, rich ‘burnt apricot and raisin’ notes that European oak is famous for. Any cloudiness when mixed with water is normal for a whisky that hasn’t been chill-filtered”
Taste: 6.5 – Like the Select it’s a lot lighter and very flavorful at first.
Aftertaste: 8.0 – It then becomes a peat bog covered in salt water. This really tastes kinda like you were having an Islay scotch on a beach and some sea spray got into your drink, but you don’t mind because the salt is enough to bring our more of the flavor.
Burn/Smooth: 4.0 – It does however burn a bit, and much can be said about how easy seawater goes down a man’s throat – but this is not a smooth spirit.
Aroma: 8.5 – I want to paint you a picture. Imagine yourself at a beach house, the sight of the setting sun and rolling waves fills your view. You sit down in your chair and pour yourself a scotch. Not something from the Lowlands or Spey where it’d be lost to the salty air, but an Islay. You take a whiff – and you know. You will be okay, you are okay. All is right with the world.
Manliness: 7.0 – As I said above, the color and scotch is all Laphroaig which does wonders for it’s points. But the wordy repetitive text just hurts it badly here.
W/ Rocks: 4.0 – I guess if you were looking more for the sea water, and less the islay – than ice is your friend here. Seriously though – this is a scotch you take neat.
Value: 4.0 – That is a pretty steep price for a scotch, and there’s others of the Laphroaig line you’d be better off getting. Like the aforementioned Select or the Three Wood. Both of which are 20-40 dollars cheaper. If however you want a real sea-faring scotch this is certainly better than Wolfburn.
Google Shop Average: $92
Metric Score: 42/70 |+| Metric Average: 6.0 |+| Reviewer Average: 7.0
Final Thoughts: Well it’s been fun while it lasted being in the UK, and I’m glad that this is my final parting gift. (He says having gone to the UK every 6 months or so for the last few years), but hey in the next few months ago – that country might be gone. (My job with it.) While this might not be my favorite Laphroaig, I am still glad that I got it.