Lagavulin Distiller Editions, 1991 & 1993

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Lagavulin 1991 & 1993 Distiller Edition

I have two of the Lagavulin Distiller Editions in my single malt collection; Lagavulin 1991 Distillers Edition (bottled in 2008) and Lagavulin 1993 Distillers Edition (bottled in 2009).  What could be more enjoyable than a side-by-side tasting of these two?

Lagavulin Distillers Edition 1991,  43% ABV.

On the nose, I find a sweet, orange, scent mixed with peat and smoky seaweed.  The palate brings liquorice, oranges, salt and smoky peat.  The finish is medium to long, white pepper, a little caramel, with lingering smoke.

Lagavulin Distillers Edition 1993, 43% ABV

First, it is clear that these both share a common lineage.  Like a younger brother to the 1991 Distillers Edition.  On the nose, it is like it plays similar notes, but softer.  On the palate, I find more of a contrast.  The smoke and peat are bigger, while the orange, liquorice and salt remain part of the mix.  There is a distinct note to the spicy element, maybe a little more clove-like.  The finish seems a bit longer, warmer, with less caramel, and more smoke.

In reality, I suspect that if I tasted these two whiskies on different days, my descriptions would be nearly identical.  Tasting them side-by-side is likely to bring to the front rather minor differences in their profiles.

Bottom line, if you can get your hands on either of these limited editions, and have any affinity for Islay style scotches, I do not think that you would be disappointed with either whisky.  I find that I have enjoyed the additional flavor that the double maturation in sherry casks brings to the traditional Lagavulin profile.

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