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18th April 2023

Innis & Gunn Release Beer Collaboration with Laphroaig: ‘Islay Whisky Cask’ Limited Edition

17th April 2023 – Innis & Gunn, the multi-award-winning brewer from Edinburgh, has launched the 2023 iteration of its Innis & Gunn Islay Whisky Cask Beer – made in collaboration with Laphroaig.

First released in 2021, this is Innis & Gunn’s fastest ever selling limited-edition.  And the 2022 release had the highest rate of sale of any craft 330ml bottle beer in Scotland.

Islay Whisky Cask Beer, a 7.4% Scottish red ale, is brewed by Innis & Gunn before every year being matured in a different way, always in Laphroaig casks. This produces a limited edition that continues to evolve while offering familiarity – yet with subtly different nuances:

In 2021, matured solely in Laphroaig 10YO casks;

In 2022, matured in rare Laphroaig ‘Quarter Casks’ which, being smaller casks, allowed a greater interaction between cask and beer;

And for 2023, the larger Laphroaig 10YO (second fill Bourbon) casks have been used for the initial 10 weeks maturation, followed by 3 weeks in second fill Port casks – as used for finishing Laphroaig. This results in the 2023 release allowing drinkers to experience a double hit of Laphroaig’s legendary and highly appreciated eccentricities of flavour.

This year’s Islay Whisky Cask will therefore offer a totally fascinating taste experience. This is a distinctive beer accented with hallmark Laphroaig aromas and tastes. Chestnut in colour, there is an attractive head on pouring.  Initially heady and intense, the aroma has a smack of peat smoke, which then softens to reveal notes of chocolate and spiciness, with hints of heather and coffee.  The taste is a contrasting marriage with the aroma – the beer has an oak and malt sweetness while being full-bodied with hints of dried red fruits, toasted malt, caramel and Scottish ‘tablet’.  Lingering with a slight dryness, Islay Whisky Cask beer has a long finish with a soft aftertaste delivering subtle smokiness.

Best poured cold – between 1°C to 4°C – into a goblet glass and ideally with a dram of Laphroaig alongside for a wonderfully complementary pairing.  The higher ABV and full flavour palate allows the beer to pair well with foods such as sashimi, slow cooked beef brisket (braised in Islay Whisky Cask Beer) and sticky toffee pudding with toasted barley ice-cream.

Dougal Gunn Sharp, Founder and Master Brewer, Innis & Gunn said:

“This is my favourite expression of our collaboration with Laphraoig yet. The double maturation, and use of ex-port casks, has brought further depth to the beer and introduced sweet, fruity notes which are in delicious balance with the briny-smoky hallmark Laphroaig taste. Both our brewing team, and the distillery team at Laphroaig really understand how to balance flavour and have pushed themselves this year to make something really special. This uncompromising beer unites brewing and distilling craftsmanship at its best.”

Barry McAffer, Distillery Manager, Laphroaig said:

“Our collaboration with Innis & Gunn is as natural as it is exciting. At Laphroaig, we’ve spent over two centuries perfecting our unique and bold flavours. It requires an uncompromising and original brand to match it – enter Innis & Gunn!

“I’ve always been a fan of Innis & Gunn, and this latest release does not disappoint. You’ll taste a whisper of peat along with a distinctive toasted malt note that comes from the Laphroaig cold smoking kilns, along with rich fruits and a long-lasting sweetness from the double matured port casks. The unmistakable refreshing citrus and orange rind flavours from the beer are followed by a warming finish with hints of oak and that classic understated bitterness that Innis & Gunn create so well. It’s a superb combination of cask, whisky and beer all perfectly balanced in flavour.”

Innis & Gunn Islay Whisky Cask in its specially designed gift carton by Scottish artist, Scott Naismith, is available from Tuesday 18th April 2023 via the Innis & Gunn online shop, priced at £6 per 330ml bottle; and for the first time appearing on shelf from June at Waitrose and Sainsbury’s nationwide, plus in Booths Supermarkets and in Tesco in Scotland at £5-6 per 330ml bottle.

Pioneers of cask maturation, Innis & Gunn was founded in 2003 by Master Brewer, Dougal Gunn Sharp with the launch of ‘The Original’, a single malt whisky cask matured Scottish golden beer, widely available in supermarkets and in export markets.

Innis & Gunn’s innovative NPD programme continues to push the boundaries of brewing in 2023 with five Limited Edition brews being unveiled throughout the year.


For more information:

Rupert Ponsonby, R&R Teamwork – / 020 7384 1333

About Innis & Gunn:

Since its foundation in 2003, Scottish brewer Innis & Gunn has grown to become one of the UK’s most successful craft beer businesses. Using innovative techniques including oak cask maturation, Innis & Gunn brew multi-award-winning beers including the flagship ‘The Original’ and Innis & Gunn Lager Beer, recently awarded at The Great Taste Awards. The brewer’s portfolio also includes a range of IPAs and a line of bespoke limited-edition brews which demonstrate quality, innovation and craft.

Follow Innis & Gunn:                      Twitter: @innisandgunn                                Instagram: @innisandgunn

Please find a bottle shot ready to download here and more of a photography selection is available here.

For more information:

Rupert Ponsonby, R&R Teamwork – / 020 7384 1333