Today, Lagavulin and Caol Ila launched their Fèis Ìle 2020 whiskies: Lagavulin 20 Years Old Fèis Ìle 2020 and Caol Ila 16 Years Old Fèis Ìle 2020. Every year, the Diageo-owned Islay distilleries release special bottlings for the annual Whisky festival. This year Fèis Ìle has been moved to an online format.
The Lagavulin 20 Years Old Fèis Ìle 2020 has a very limited production of just 6,000 bottles and is bottled at 54% ABV. It’s a 20 year old matured in a carefully selected mix of refill and PX/Oloroso seasoned casks.
According to Ian Crammond, it’s “a classic mature Lagavulin with a delightfully subtle extra twist of richness and power on the palate and in the finish.” The palate is smooth in texture with an immediately powerful sweet and smoky taste. The finish is long, warm and dry with pleasant smokiness.
The Lagavulin is priced at £190 (US$241) per bottle.
The Caol Ila 16 Years Old Fèis Ìle 2020 release is even smaller with just 3,000 bottles being made available for purchase. It’s bottled at 53.9% ABV and retails for £120 (US$152) per bottle.
According to Ian Crammond, it’s “A richer Caol Ila with subtle aromas and sweet cleansing flavours on the palate.” On the palate, it is rich and thick in texture with an immediately very sweet, powerful taste. There is the spiciness of stem ginger and deep fruitiness, backed by faint smoke.
The whiskies can be purchased online at shop.discoveringdistilleries.com and are being limited to two bottles per customer.
In another note, Diageo will donate 20 signed bottles, including ones from Lagavulin and Caol Ila, plus one bottle from the recent Port Ellen 40 Years Old, to the Fèis Ìle Committee. Worth a combined £10,000 (US$12,700), the sale of the bottles will be used to raise funds for Islay-based charitable organizations and community groups.
Last week, Douglas Laing released a new Big Peat whisky for the Fèis Ìle festival: the Big Peat 8 Years Old A846.