Lagavulin 12 year old (Diageo Special Releases 2012), 56.1%

Price: $111 Issue: Winter 2012 Reviewer: Dave Broom

This is usually a bracing expression of Lagavulin and this year's release doesn't disappoint—smoldering peat, ozone freshness, but with greater sweetness than in 2011, though water shows how it is still just a little gawky. The palate is, yes, smoky, but there's also light cereal, praline, violets, and seashore aromas aplenty. Fills the mouth with intensity. Okay, it's edgy, but that's what you expect.