This is blended whisky for single-malt fans, specifically those with a taste for smoke. The name is of course a reference to the island of Islay, home to such heavily peated icons as Laphroaig, Lagavulin and Ardbeg. There’s considerable Laphroaig in this blend, which delivers more of a coal-type smoke than Lagavulin’s characteristic iodine or Ardbeg’s bacon fat. Blended Scotches are a mix of robust barley-based single malts along with lighter grain whiskies based either on corn or wheat. The flavour, and the price, here suggest a higher-than-average contribution from the single-malt side. It’s a compelling balance of sweet fruitiness, dry grain and peat, with a rich, creamy texture and nuances of plum, caramel and tobacco. A very impressive blend, and considerably better than the more widely available eight-year-old Islay Mist.