Two limited edition single-cask bottlings of Lagavulin™ and Caol Ila™ Single Malt Scotch Whiskies will be released for the 2011 Islay Festival, Diageo has announced.
Like previous Festival bottlings, it’s anticipated that they will be much in demand from enthusiasts. Often selling out within hours of going on sale, they will be available to personal shoppers at the distilleries only.
13-Year Old Lagavulin™
The Lagavulin Festival bottling comes from a Refill Butt filled in February 1998, selected from Warehouse Number 1 by Iain McArthur, long-time warehouseman at the distillery. It has been bottled in an edition of 588 bottles at its natural cask strength of 51% ABV.
One of Diageo’s tasters commented on its “approachable fruit tones and late, cleansing anise-like notes, against a backdrop of appetising smoke”.
Bodega-cask Caol Ila™
The Caol Ila single cask bottling – hand selected by Billy Stitchell, long-standing distillery manager, whose family connections with Caol Ila distillery go back many generations – has been drawn from a bodega cask filled in February 2000. It enjoys a high natural cask strength of 64.3% ABV, in an edition of 600 bottles.
“A lean and precise whisky at cask strength … altogether longer and more structured with water. Complex and provocative throughout …” were some of our taster’s comments.
The Lagavulin single-cask bottling will be sold on a first-come, first-served basis at the distillery, starting on the distillery’s open day, Saturday 21 May. The Caol Ila bottling will be sold with effect from Monday 23 May which is the Caol Ila open day.
Both bottlings are priced at £79.95 UK RRP per bottle.
Nick Morgan, Diageo’s Scotch Knowledge and Heritage Director, said: “Whisky lovers travel from all over the world to visit the Islay Festival.
“These two carefully chosen single cask bottlings are both outstanding examples of Islay whiskies, conveying something of the island’s magic for those lucky enough enjoy them on their return home.”
During the Festival, a series of special events (now all fully booked) will be held at both Lagavulin and Caol Ila distilleries, including tastings with the distillery manager and warehouse demonstrations. There will be also be tours of the Port Ellen Maltings.
Access to Caol Ila Distillery
Diageo has announced that, as in previous years, due to limited space there is no parking at Caol Ila distillery, except for cars with a registered disabled badge. A regular complimentary shuttle bus service will operate from Ballygrant Hall at Keills.