Whiskybase, the Dutch database for all things whisky, currently holds 105,624 listings of bottles of whisky (and there will be more by the time you check). Granted, some of them are double (or quadruple) listings of the same bottle, but just think of the vastness of the achievement: Successfully creating, and maintaining, a community generated, free database of any bottle of whisky. Complete with the ability to post notes, scores and find store links. Naturally, a store and marketplace accompany the site, as well as being a physical store in Rotterdam, but the sales element is very soft indeed, and is very low key compared to the high value the site brings to the whisky community.
So the site offers a bottle every time 10,000 new bottles are listed (which seems to be happening at an ever increasing rate), and for 100,000 we got a young Laphroaig refill sherry cask, keeping us on Islay in this week’s reviews. Obviously, this cask was sourced from a source that could not officially name the distillery, so telling us that it’s from the same distillery as the 10,000 bottling is a very simple way to point us in the right direction 🙂
Whiskybase 100,000 Bottles on the Wall, 2011 Laphroaig, Distilled 5 May 2011, Bottled 23 January 2018, Refill Sherry Hogshead 3199, 354 Bottles (58.7% ABV, NCF, NC)
Appearance: Copper, little droplets peeling off a pretty sturdy necklace.
Nose: TCP and peat, honey and red fruit, with some baked goods and a hint of rubber. There’s also some light spices there, with a hint of spice (very light cinnamon and nutmeg)
Palate: Seriously medicinal, sweet peat, and hints of raspberry and red apple.
Linger: Medicinal and dry, with some smoky raspberry coolie and some hickory smoke.
It’s good for what it is, but you can’t help but wonder what it would have grown up to be had its life not been snuffed out at so tender an age, and yes, I am thinking of the fabulous 1998 casks 😉