There are times when a whisky sings a particular note… with such clarity and consistency that your impression of that dram is forever associated with that note.
I must admit, until this Bowmore, green pepper was never such a singular stubborn element.
We sampled it blind before the reveal.
Bowmore 27 year, Batch 5, 47.6% (TBWC) Bottle 94 of 285
- Nose – Peat and how! Crazy sweet peat, bit of funk, fruit, some phenols, medical, surgery, bill capsules, VERY sweet, mulberry
- Palate – Fresh capsicum which seamlessly follows through on the finish, a bit of green tea…
- Finish – Dry and pure capsicum
After the 1st sip, it was pretty clear this whisky needs some time to settle down…
- Nose – How interesting… the peat ran off, barley sugar, toffee, something almost like apple sauce, lemon curd tart, and apricots
- Palate – A bit of spice, cinnamon, a bit bitter at the front
- Finish – A nice cinnamon
We set it aside and what did we find?
- Nose – Green capsicum
- Palate – Goodness! Green capsicum
- Finish – And…. gee….. Green capsicum
Now before you start to think green capsicum is a bad thing, it was actually quite good!
Giving even more time, we could detect a hint of ash. Even later… pickle? Yup… pickle.
This is one of those whiskies which is worth checking out but… certainly not an every day dram. Instead one of those whiskies that works best when you are in the mood for it… particularly if you happen to enjoy…. yup… Green Capsicum!
What do the folks at That Boutique-y Whisky Company have to say?
The massively well-loved Bowmore distillery has resided on the Isle of Islay since 1779 – it’s the oldest Islay whisky distillery and it’s still going even today! The distillery is home to its very own malting floor, an eight ton stainless steel mash tun, six wash backs and two pairs of stills, which actually produce enough heat not only to make their lovely peated whisky, but the waste heat from the stills heats the nearby pool! The label features a young lad with a freshly-swiped bra from the pool’s changing rooms legging it from one of the pool’s lifeguards.
Unfortunately the Bowmore batch 5 / 27 year has been replaced by batch 12 / 19 year on the TBWC website, however you can read what the chaps at Master of Malt have to say:
- Nose: Salted butter, aromatic cedar, a whiff of floral malt developing beside classic coastal air.
- Palate: Good cider, slightly vegetal at points, smoke meat and fried banana.
- Finish: Slightly oily. Sea salt, lemon-flavoured boiled sweets.
So they didn’t discover any green capsicum, but can see some of the elements they found in there too.
What else did we sample in our evening tribute to Jim McEwan with whiskies bottled by “That Boutique-y Whisky Company”?
- Mackmyra 3 year, Batch 1, 47.2% (TBWC)
- Bruichladdich 13 year, Batch 11, 47.6% (TBWC)
- Octomore 6 year, Batch 1, 50.4% (TBWC)
Clearly no stranger to Bowmore, here are a few sampled over the years…
- 12 year (1970s) 40%
- 15 Year Laimrig 54.4%
- 16 year “The Prestonfield” Vintage 1972 (1972/1988), CS No 1036-39 43%
- 17 Year White Sands 43%
- 21 year Port Cask Matured (1988) 51.5%
- 27 year (1989) “BBQ Mango Salsa” 46% (Wymess)
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