Laphroaig 15, 1999-2015, Refill Hogshead, 50.2% – Sansibar for Van der Boog (Bare Knuckle Fighter)

Whisky-friend and Longmorn Brother GvB came by to pick up some samples, and generally we swap a few samples more when that happens. He brought this bottle for me to try a sip of, at which point I started wondering why I didn’t buy that myself, back in 2015.

You know, decently aged Laphroaig, cask strength, renowned bottler. All good things, so why did I skip it?

It turns out that this bottle was about € 200 when it came out and six years ago that was a LOT for a 15 year old Laphroaig. That explained.

Having said that, I was quite happy to be able to try it!

Image from Whiskybase

Briny peat smoke, with seaweed, marram grass, heather. Earthy, some dried peaches and apricot. Almonds, pound cake. Sweet pastry, dried fruits, dark brooding smoke.

Quite strong on the arrival. Black pepper, fierce oak, some bitterness of almonds and heather. Salty smoke, quite briny and hints of tar.

The finish is slightly more fresh, with fruit, herby plants. Gentle smoke, some citrus, even.

Strangely, I kept getting notes of dried peaches and apricot. Some almonds too. I would have guessed this to be a refill sherry cask based on those notes. However, since this is from a ‘hogshead’ it’s not out of the question although a bourbon cask is far more likely.

It’s a very good dram, and based on other Laphroaigs that came out around that time, one that stood out quite a bit. It’s complex and deep, with lots of awesome flavors to offer. What I also really enjoy is that it is quite a fierce dram, but not because of the high ABV. It’s the peppery notes and oak that make it intense. Very good stuff!


Of course it’s available in the secondary market, starting at € 425


About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm very interested in booze, with a focus on whisky. I like to listen to loads of music and play lots of Magic: the Gathering, and board games too. I'm married to Anneke, have two daughters Ot and Cato, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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