Feis Ile 2016 is not far off, so it’s time for the annual post (third year in a row!) of the Feis Ile Festival bottles.
This year, the festival will run from 21st to 28th May 2016 and Lagavulin will probably be the highlight of the festival due to the distillery’s 200th anniversary celebrations (following last year’s events at Laphroaig and Ardbeg), so it will probably be a very interesting and exciting festival (I keep saying that in the annual post, but it’s the truth!).
This post will detail all the available information on the festival bottles and I’ll update it each time more details will be revealed.
If you look for the full festival information, go to the Festival site at islayfestival.com and you can find the full Islay Festival Distillery Programmes 2016 here
Just like last year, there’s a Feis Ile bottlings by Douglas Laing, Scotch Malt Whisky Society (SMWS), Islay House and there’s even a special Finlaggan bottling.
22/5/2016 Update: Bruichladdich Feis 2016 bottling
21/5/2016 Update: Lagavulin, Caol Ila & Kilchoman Feis 2016 bottlings
20/5/2016 Update: Finlaggan Feis 2016 bottling & Bruichladdich general details
18/5/2016 Update: Islay House Feis bottling
18/5/2016 Update: Jura Tastival 2016 ABV & European price revealed
30/3/2016 Update: Bowmore Feis Ile bottes info and Douglas Laing Old Particular Bowmore 1999 Feis Ile 2016 Commemorative Bottling
23/3/2016 Update: Douglas Laing Big Peat’s Feis Ile 2016 Commemorative Bottling
15/3/2016 Update: Lagavulin single cask 1991 25yo to benefit Islay community
14/3/2016 Update: Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 details and the two Bunnahabhain bottles.
So here’s the list of Feis Ile 2016 bottlings and the available information:
Lagavulin – Open day on Saturday 21st May 2016
- Lagavulin 18 Year Old Feis Ile 2016 (49.5%, £125, 6000 bottles)
The Lagavulin Festival bottling comes from a blend of refill American Oak and ex Bodega European Oak casks. Bottled at cask strength, it will be a limited edition run of 6,000 bottles
- Lagavulin 1991 25 Year Old
This charity cask content will probably show up later this year.
Bruichladdich – Open day on Sunday 22nd May 2016
- Bruichladdich Feis Ile 2016 15 yo (50%, £95)
Bruichladdiche Festival bottle (Feis 2016) is a vatting of bourbon casks, wine casks and ACE-ed in virgin oak for about a month. A 2001 Vintage (15 Years Old) and Malt was lightly peated at 10ppm.
- Bruichladdich Valinch 2006 Islay Dunlossit (Chalice Barley) (61%, £75)
- Bruichladdich Valinch 2008 Islay Starchmill (Chalice Barley) (£75)
There will be three unique bottlings available to buy on the day. Adam Hannett has created a vatting from casks distilled back in 2001, the momentous year when Bruichladdich reopened after six silent years. He has also chosen two uber-provenance casks that were filled with spirit distilled from barley grown on single Islay farms, Starchmill and Dunlossit.
Caol Ila – Open day on Monday 23rd May 2016
- Caol Ila 12 Year Old (5X.2%, £99, 1500 bottles)
The Caol Ila single cask bottling is also a blend of refill American Oak and ex Bodega European Oak casks. Bottled at cask strength, with a limited edition run of 1,500 bottles, this is a unique, more sherried expression than might be expected of a Caol Ila
Laphroaig – Open day on Tuesday 24th May 2016
- Laphroaig Cairdeas 2016 (Madeira cask) – 51.6%
The Laphroaig Feis Ile 2016 offering is the Cairdeas 2016 which is ex-bourbon matured and then married/finished in Madeira seasoned hogsheads.
Bowmore – Open day on Wednesday 25th 2016
- Bowmore Feis Ile 2016 (American Virgin Oak & Oloroso casks) 54.9%, 1500 bottles , £55
Our exclusive Feis Ile release this year is an extraordinary and curious marriage of 4 American Virgin Oak Barrels and a 1st fill Oloroso Sherry Butt re-racked and married together in the original oak, this is a whisky not to be missed! 1500 bottles will be available to buy exclusively from the distillery visitor centre from Saturday the 21st of May at 10am.
- Bowmore 25 Year Old Feis Ile 2016 – 200 bottles, £350
Our exclusive Vintage Feis Ile Edition is a breath-taking 25 year old Bowmore, which has been lovingly finished in French Oak Wine Casks for over 12 years. Only 200 bottles of this precious liquid will be available to buy, exclusively on Wednesday the 25th of May! Golden Tickets will be issued to the first 100 people queuing at the distillery, thereafter you will be able buy and collect your bottle from 10am from the “Taste” bistro (must be collected by 4.30pm)
This year’s “Bottle Your Own” for Feis Ile has been maturing since the 20th of January 1999 and is the first of our hand fills to be matured exclusively in Pedro Ximenez European Oak Our “vaults experience” will be available to buy and hand fill from 10am on Saturday the 21st of May (Maximum of 4 bottles per person – pre filled bottles will be available for multiple bottle buys to reduce congestion and waiting times)
Jura – Open day on Thursday 26th May 2016
- Jura Tastival 2016 – triple sherry finish (51%, £84.95/€129)
Finished in Palomino Fino, Amoroso Oloroso and Apostoles Oloroso Sherry casks.
Kilchoman – Open day on Thursday 26th May 2016
- Kilchoman 2007 Feis Ile 2016 (£90, sherry cask, 637 bottles)
This year we have chosen Oloroso sherry butt 429/2007, the oldest sherry cask we have released to date. Bottled at cask strength, there are just 637 bottles available from this single cask
The Feis Ile release is only available from the distillery and will go on sale at 10am next Thursday – one bottle per person at £90
Bunnahabhain – Open day on Friday 27th May 2016
As usual, Bunnahabhain Feis Ile 2016 line up contains two bottles:
- Moine Pedro Ximenez 12-Year-Old – £95, 833 bottles, 54.6%
A peated (Moine is peat in Scots Gaelic) 2004 vintage that was aged in casks (unspecified but probably ex-bourbon) for nine years before being finished for three additional years in PX casks
- Amontillado 16-Year-Old – £250, 250 bottles
the high end expression: Ten years spent in bourbon casks and six additional years in Amontillado casks.
Ardbeg – Open day on Saturday 28th May 2016
- Ardbeg Dark Cove – 55%/46.5% (£95.99)
Ardbeg Feis Ile 2016 offering is influenced by “dark sherry casks”, That probably means strong sherry notes influence on the whisky, but not necessary stronger than Uigeadail. The Feis Ile edition is bottled at 46.5% while the community version is 55% (which may not be available during Feis)ץ
- Big Peat Feis Ile 2016 – 48%, 500 bottles
Just 500 bottles of the Feis Ile edition will be produced, each individually numbered. It will be sold on allocation to global distribution partners, as well as during the festival on Islay. 50 bottles are available to pre-order now from Douglas Laing.com, with a limited edition poster included, and signed by Fred Laing, for good measure.
- Old Particular Bowmore 1999 Feis Ile 2016 – 48.3%, 246 bottles
246 bottles were charged from a single hogshead cask of Bowmore 16 Years Old Single Malt Scotch Whisky, which was distilled in September 1999 and bottled in March 2016. It is bottled at natural cask strength of 48.3%, without colouring or chill-filtration, and is said to be “classically Islay” in character, displaying bold maritime, smoky and leathery notes on the nose, palate and finish.
It will be sold on allocation to distributors in key markets globally.
Scotch Malt Whisky Society (SMWS)
- 127.44 Cantina Mexicana, Port Charlotte 12 yo ex-sherry butt (SMWS Members: £120 Non SMWS Members: £240)
The nose was snout-grabbing – woody, like old sea chests or a dusty Mexican cantina floor (including leather boots and fag-ends), lots of liquorice; figs and oriental spices, then a beef stew with sherry and smoked paprika in it. The neat taste was simply huge – smoke, ash and burnt sticks; Moffat toffees, Liquorice Allsorts, balsamic pears and Amontillado sherry.
- Port Charlotte 2005 , 10 Years Old, Matured in Premium French Oak (£100)
- Finlaggan 10 Year Old Feis 2016 Edition (£50)