News & PR: Lagavulin 1991 Single Cask



Concluding Lagavulin Distillery’s memorable 200th anniversary year on an alltime high, the iconic distillery announced today that an extra special single cask bottling of a 24 year old whisky will be released to deliver a lasting legacy on Islay. The extremely limited edition will see all proceeds, exceeding £0.5M, divided between seven charities on the island.

This extraordinary whisky will enrich everyone lucky enough to purchase a bottle, both through the quality of the whisky and the knowledge that their action is giving back to the very place this was created in.

Lagavulin 1991 bottle

RRP £1,494 ABV 52.7% Available via ballot from The Whisky Exchange & Auction in brief… The remarkable depth and wonderfully uplifting freshness of this beautifully balanced Lagavulin 1991 speak lovingly of its long years in an ex-sherry butt.

The Lagavulin 1991 Single Malt Scotch Whisky cask of just 522 bottles was carefully selected by the distillery team and Ivan Menezes, CEO, Diageo. Bottles can only be purchased via a special ballot on The Whisky Exchange that launches today, 31st December, with bottle No. 1 being auctioned separately to raise even more charitable funds, and one bottle being donated to each of the Diageo Archive and our partners at The Whisky Exchange respectively.

Potential customers can register interest in purchasing a bottle of Lagavulin 1991 priced at £1,494 with The Whisky Exchange. The pricing reflects the significant and historic date that marks the first ever recorded distillation of Scotch Whisky. To ensure that demand for these rare bottles is managed fairly, the ballot on 12th February will be drawn and the bottles allocated at random.

Georgette Crawford, Distillery Manager at Lagavulin comments: “We will all be raising a dram to years gone by and an exciting future ahead of us and this incredible island, as we close a year of spectacular celebrations for the 200th anniversary of the distillery. This whisky is truly memorable in its complexity and unique in the way our distinctive distillery’s character shines through. The range and ambition of the projects we are supporting is something that as an Ileach I feel very deeply about and I am so proud to see the proceeds of our iconic whisky benefit the local community in such an unforgettable way.”

Nick Morgan, Head of Whisky Outreach adds: “We all work in Scotch because we love it. Lagavulin is a whisky and a place that stirs us all both personally and professionally. Being able to launch a bottling like this that will have a deep impact on the magical island of Islay for generations to come is a career highlight. This is just one way in which we want to express our affection for the people who have welcomed us (Ileachs and others) to work and live on Islay for the last 200 years.”

Sukhinder Singh, co-founder of The Whisky Exchange, says of the bottling: “As soon as we heard about this special project, we wanted to be involved. For me, Lagavulin is one of the most amazing whiskies from Scotland, and the 16 year old in particular is a personal all-time favourite. We look forward to working with our friends at Diageo to secure a lasting legacy for the whole of Islay through this historic, one-off limited release.”


To learn more about the charities set to deliver these legacy projects, and for more detail of bottling please visit To register interest in the ballot, please visit

Official Tasting notes:

Appearance: Lovely, deep olive-hued chestnut becoming clear orange-hued amber in sunlight. Fresh and lightly oily with water.

Nose: Instant and insistent, yet light, clean and detailed throughout. Charred oak and rich, mature fruits are backed by subtle milk chocolate and vanilla. Agitation reveals a recollection of new make and the characteristic Lagavulin note of fresh newsprint, developing burnt caramel, subtle spent match and a slightly sapid note of moist earth. Later, ripe red apple and a fine hint of smoked fish sprinkled with olive oil. Water changes all this, yielding fresh, sweet notes of candied peel, marzipan and sugar icing, of subtle maple smoked foods, and finally of honey and dark chocolate.

Body: Medium to rich; smooth. Softly fluid with water.

Palate: Hot and sweet. A moment of woody dryness; then calmer, with soothing, sweetly minty chocolate notes and comforting honey laced with a subtle chilli-like heat. A bitter-sweet, charred astringency rises in the mid-palate, carrying notes of cocoa and espresso toward the finish. Water brings succulent, sweet-spicy warmth and a balancing ripe fruit acidity. Then drying cocoa, crystallised ginger and peppermint lead smoothly to late, silky tannins.

Finish: Gentle, well balanced and fresh throughout. Quietly persistent with tart, red berry notes, a little cedar and a spicy, smoky-gingery warmth that makes for a pleasing aftertaste.

Lagavulin Legacy Charity information

The proceeds received by Diageo from the sale of the Lagavulin 1991 bottling will be donated to the following registered charities in the following proportions, to fund projects on Islay which are designed to enhance the understanding of the rich and diverse history of Islay and enhance the life of the local community.

Islay Heritage (OSCR No. SC046938):

A wide ranging scope to include: research at Dunyvaig Castle, the creation of an Islay Heritage trail to help more people understand its rich history, conservation work focusing on Kildalton chapel and education. FUNDING AMOUNT: £310,000

McTaggart Cyber Café (OSCR No. SC028306):

Some upgrade works to the fabric of the building including heating, new doors & windows and improvements to the Bistro Café area to allow for more activities for a wider range of people. FUNDING AMOUNT: £60,000

Islay & Jura Community Enterprises Limited McTaggart Leisure Centre (OSCR No. SC015815):

Some fundamental works are required for the swimming baths to upgrade equipment and improve energy efficient. FUNDING AMOUNT: £60,000

Finlaggan Trust (OSCR No. SC000821):

Refurbishment and modernisation of the existing visitor centre and development of the Finlaggan Bridge. FUNDING AMOUNT: £60,000

Islay Arts (OSCR No. SC000272):

Funding will enable Islay Arts to increase the scope of events it funds. FUNDING AMOUNT: £20,000

Islay Festival Association (OSCR No. SC004390):

Funding will help support the organisation to develop its events programme. FUNDING AMOUNT: £10,000

Royal Society for the Protection of Birds (OSCR No. SC037654) (Charity Commission No. 207076):

RSPB is actively engaged in peat restoration on its estates on Islay at The Oa and Loch Gruinart. The funding will be used to fund peat restoration and conservation on the island. FUNDING AMOUNT: £60,000



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