Thursday, May 11, 2017

Tasting: The Single Cask. Bowmore 14 Years

The Single Cask. Cask 31931
Bowmore – From a single Cask – 14 yrs

Single Malt Scotch Whisky.
Non Chill-Filtered/No added colouring

Distillery: Bowmore
Bottler: The Single Cask
Region: Islay
Age: 14 Years Old
Proof/ABV: 50%
Distilled: 17-10-2001
Bottled: 02-08-2016
Dk price: $128USD/900Dkk.  
Release: Limited 90 bottles release
Cask: Bourbon

Points: 88/100

Bowmore is one of those distilleries, who really don’t need any introduction.

It is said to have been established in 1779 by John P. Simpson, at least that’s what Bowmore claims, which makes Bowmore one of the oldest working distilleries in Scotland.  

Bowmore is located on the isle of Islay on the South Eastern shore of Loch Indaal.

The Bowmore distillery ownership has change hands quite a few times over the centuries, and finally in 1963 Stanley P. Morrison Ltd. bought the distillery for 117,000 GBP, and added a visitor center and increased the numbers of stills to four.
Japanese Suntory bought Bowmore's parent company in 1994, also gaining control over Glen Garioch distillery (which we described earlier in this installment, when we tasted Malt Barn’s 21 Year old offering) and Auchentoshan. In May 2014 Beam Inc. and Suntory Holdings Limited merged to create Beam Suntory, who is now the owners of Morrison Bowmore holdings.

Bowmore’s core range consists of a 12, 15, 18 and 25 year old, and just as we have experienced with a lot of other distilleries, Bowmore has released a line of duty free expressions, or “Travel Exclusive” as Bowmore likes to call them, currently existing of the NAS Black Rocks, Gold Reef and the 17yo White Sands. 

The phenol contents of the malted barley for the Bowmore malt whisky is approximately 25 PPM.

A fun fact in Bowmore’s history is that during WW2 Bowmore Distillery stopped its whisky production to host the RAF Coastal Command, who ran anti-submarine warfare missions from Loch Indaal.

Unmistaken gentle Bowmore bonfire smoke followed by vanilla and hay.

Oily rich structure and nicely mouth coating. That old familiar Islay hug. Soul warming peat, black pepper and sea salt.   

Medium length smoky finish.

Overall Impression:
I really like Bowmore, and this Single Cask expression delivers all the way. Even though it’s not an overly complex whisky, it got a great balance, and the high ABV really suits the classic Bowmore profile. It’s kind of like the 12 year old core range expression on steroids… Bigger, bolder and braver.   

Review By: Hasse Berg

Photo by: (All rights reserved)

Son of Winston Churchill has kindly been granted permission to use the photo in this review.