Welcome to the 2021 edition of the Feis Ile bottles guide!
Once again, this year the festival goes virtual as the Covid-19 pandemic is still raging around the world and surely no big crowds will be allowed in such public events.
This post will detail all the available information on the festival bottles and will be update each time more details will be revealed.
06/06/2021 – Add Bunnahabhain Surprise Feis Ile 2021 bottle
26/05/2021 – Updated Laphroaig Cairdeas 2021 bottle price and availability date
26/05/2021 – Added Lagavulin and Caol Ila Feis Ile 2021 bottles (H/T Ruben of whiskynotes.be)
19/05/2021 – Added Bruichladdich Feis Ile 2021 bottles
19/05/2021 – Added Jura Feis Ile 2021 bottle
12/05/2021 – Added Bowmore Feis Ile 2021 (or maybe 2020?) bottles
29/04/2021 – Added second Bunnahabhain Feis Ile 2021 bottle
27/04/2021 – Added the first Bunnahabhain Feis Ile 2021 bottle
20/04/2021 – Added Kilchoman Feis Ile 2021 bottle
21/03/2021 – Added Laphroaig Cairdeas 2021 bottle
28/02/2021 – Added SMWS Caol Ila bottle
08/02/2021 – Initial update with Ardbeg
and a few SMWS bottles
Ardnahoe – Open day on Friday 28th May 2021
- No Feis Ile bottling
Lagavulin – Open day on Saturday 29th May 2021
- Lagavulin 13 Year Old Port cask finish (54.4%, 6000 bottles, £160)
Matured in refill American Oak casks and finished in high char Port-seasoned casks.
Just like last year it will be shipped only in UK.
Bruichladdich – Open day on Sunday 30th May 2021
- Laddie Origins Fèis Ìle 2021 (56.3%, 3,000 bottles, £150)
Unpeated Bruichladdich. On sale 30th May via Ballot.
Bruichladdich Laddie Origins is a commemorative liquid journey that brings together some of the highlights of these last two decades. Some of our firsts, including our first triple distilled X3 and spirit distilled from our first crop of biodynamically grown barley, are combined with high provenance Islay, Bere and organically grown. This complex recipe draws single malt from 13 casks across 12 vintages, 6 barley types and 9 different cask types.
Full recipe is here.
- Bruichladdich Fèis Ìle 2021 Single Cask (17 Year Old, 59.2%, 840 bottles, 500ml, £150)
On occasion, our Head Distiller Adam Hannett takes the opportunity to hand-select a single cask of extraordinary quality from our warehouses. For our Feis Ile 2021 celebrations, he has chosen a 17-year-old, unpeated Bruichladdich, matured full term in an “incredible” 2nd fill sherry cask. Despite our experimental nature when it comes to maturation, with our warehouses filled with over 200 different cask types, sherry casks are some of the rarest you’ll find at our distillery. Distilled in 2003 from 100% Scottish barley, this 50cl single cask release is limited to 840 bottles and is bottled un chill-filtered and colouring free at 59.2% abv.
On sale 30th May via Ballot
The Botanist Islay Aged Gin (42.5%, 2011 SC, 418 Bottles, 350ml, £75)
To celebrate The Botanist’s 10th birthday, we’re pleased to bring you our first-ever Limited Edition bottling, exclusively for Fèis Ìle 2021. Crafted by Head Distiller Adam Hannett, this small batch of Islay Dry Gin from our inaugural year has been matured in a Pauillac French red wine cask since 2011. With only 418 bottles available, the resulting liquid is a rare and experimental take on The Botanist, with notes of sweet, aromatic juniper, toasted oak, ginger and spice. Best served neat or over ice, with a splash of soda and orange twist. Curiosity, experimentation and the progressive Bruichladdich spirit have led us to this truly unique expression. “Curiosity and patience have led us to this unique and beguiling place. Worth the wait.” – Adam Hannett
On sale 30th May via Ballot
Caol Ila – Open day on Monday 31st May 2021
- Caol Ila 12 Year Old Moscatel finish (56.6%, 3000 bottles, £130)
Matured in refill American Oak casks and finished in high char Moscatel-seasoned casks.
Just like last year it will be shipped only in UK.
Laphroaig – Open day on Tuesday 1st June 2021
- Laphroaig Cairdeas 2021 Pedro Ximenez Casks (58.9%, £89.90)
The Laphroaig Cairdeas 2021 will be PX Casks (Cask Strength). It’s triple casked whisky – starting with 1st fill ex-bourbon casks, moved to Quarter casks and eventually finished in European Oak Hogshead PX casks.
Will go on sale July 1st
Bowmore – Open day on Wednesday 2nd June 2021
- Bowmore 18 Year Old Fèis Ìle Limited Edition (51.2%, 2865 bottles, £135)
This Feis ile bottling from Bowmore is 18 Year Old whisky at 51.2%. 2865 bottles are available via online ballot to those with valid UK shipping address.
Matured in First fill Oloroso casks.
Interesting enough, the official picture shows Feis Ile 2020 on the bottle so those bottles were probably bottled before Covid-19 for Feis Ile 2020 which got cancelled and Bowmore didn’t join the other distilleries in releasing a Festival bottling on-line.
- Bowmore 23 Year Old Vintage 1996 Fèis Ìle Limited Edition (50.8%, 155 bottles, £365)
The second and premium level Bowmore Feis Ile bottling. Like the 18 year old, the label in the picture shows Feis Ile 2020.
First Fill Bourbon single cask.
Kilchoman – Open day on Thursday 3rd June 2021
- Kilchoman Feis Ile 2021 (2,832 bottles, 56.3%)
Eight 100% Islay casks for this year’s release, two 2011 oloroso sherry butts and six 2012 bourbon barrels. The casks were filled with 20ppm 100% Islay spirit, distilled from Optic and Publican barley varieties, harvested at Kilchoman in 2010 and 2011.
Bunnahabhain – Open day on Friday 4th June 2021
- Bunnahabhain 2013 Moine Bordeaux Cask Finish (59.5%, 5166 bottles)
Distilled 10/10/2013 and bottled 25/11/2020
Light toasted oak, red fruits leading to a sweet, dark fruit jam and a hint of dry smoke.
Peat smoke, oak spice, dark grapes, cocoa and red chili, with a delicately balanced sweetness and acidity.
Long and sweet, with hints of red wine and over-ripened grapes.
- Bunnahabhain 2001 Marsala Cask Finish (53.6%, 1333 bottles)
Distilled 08/10/2001 and botted 19/01/2021
Dried fruit, honey and Morello cherries, with hints of red grapes, walnuts, liquorice and tobacco.
Sweetly dry flavours of stone fruits, red apple, vanilla, honey and cloves, with a touch of oak and roasted nuts.
Dry and short, with subtle hints of tobacco, leather and spice.
- Bunnahabhain 1986 Tritheads’a Ceithir (48.8%, 249 bottles, £750)
Matured in a refill Oloroso sherry butt for more than 30 years in our coastal warehouse, this single cask is truly delicious. Heady aromas of rain-drenched strawberries, nutty oak and candied orange peel, give way to the tantalisingly tropical tang of banana, pineapple and coconut, and a satisfyingly smooth vanilla and chestnut finish.
Ardbeg – Open day on Saturday 5th June 2021
- Ardbeg Scorch (46%)
Dragon Charred casks (One level up from Alligator). A committee release bottled at 51.7% will be released sometime before the festival.
Jura – Open day on Sunday 6th June 2021
- Jura Fèis Ìle Distillery Exclusive Cask 2021 (57.1%, £145, 340 bottles)
Fully matured for 18 years in a single refill sherry butt from Jerez.
The Jura Distillery Cask Fèis Ìle Edition 2021 will be available on 6th June to buy online via the Jura Whisky website for £145 plus shipping to selected markets around the world.
The Jura Distillery Cask Fèis Ìle Edition 2021 will be available to buy from https://shop.jurawhisky.com/ on 6th June, 2021.
SMWS (Scotch Malt Whisky Society)
- There are no official Feis Ile 2021 bottles from SMWS
Based on input and clarifications from Feis committee and SMWS, this section was removed as there are no official Feis 2021 bottles from SMWS.
Big Peat ‘PEATRICHOR’ (58.3%)
- PEATRICHOR – This is a reference to Petrichor and that is the typical smell of rain after a dry period. We also call this fragrance ‘petrichor’. This is of course a nod to the rainy weather on Islay.
- (Note: There’s no mention of Feis Ile 2021 on the label, but a few shops selling it refers to this bottle as the Douglas Laing Festival bottle. Maybe should call it one a tribute bottling)