Laphroaig Cairdeas, 50.5%

Price: $60 Issue: Fall 2011 Reviewer: John Hansell

Distinctively pale in color. (A hint of its age?) This annual limited edition release is finally available in the U.S. Youthful, vibrant, and thumping, with the sea flowing through its veins. Coal tar, peat smoke, brine, seaweed, bright fruit (pear, tangerine), and soft vanilla all compete for attention. The only thing holding me back from scoring it higher is that it comes across as a bit too youthful.