Whisky Review – SMWS 123.8 In The Spanish Mountains (Glengoyne – Port Cask)

SMWS 123.8 In The Spanish Mountains
Distillery – Glengoyne
Maturation – refill Port Cask
Distill date – 30th April 2001
Age – 12 years old
743 bottles
59.2% ABV
Non Chill Filtered
No Added Colouring
~£50 from SMWS – now sold out.

Nose.

Spicy wines. Lots of red fruits – red berries, strawberry, blackberry. Aniseed. Pepper. Ginger. A touch of chilli. Some charred oak. Vanilla. In the background a touch of tropical fruits, maybe a spot of bitter orange juice as well. A tiny pinch of coconut. Very aromatically complex.

Palate.

Immediately fruitful, followed by the hit of alcohol. After that subsides we have wave after wave of fruit jams and spices. It’s a big flavoursome taste sensation, water will separate out things no doubt, but may detract from the sheer indulgence of experience.

Finish.

Chest hugging warmth. Medium- long finish. A touch of toffee in the drying oak, fruit remains for a good duration, and has a very definite feel good factor.

Adding water.

Adding a good slosh of water brings forward more of the toffee malt character of the spirit. There is still ample red fruits and port influence to please. The palate is now easier thanks to the diluted alcohol, and with that more of the juiciness can be explored. There is an added sweetness, in the form of sweet chewy toffee. The finish is sweet, sugary, with the fruit more backgrounded, but with more definition. A delectable dram, brilliant with and without water.

Conclusion.

Lush stuff…as with all SMWS…wish I could pop back to the site and buy another, but there are so many other single barrel pleasures to try, Whisky life will never get boring with the SMWS releasing such quality stuff.

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Whisky Review – Tomatin Cù Bòcan Sherry Cask

Tomatin Cù Bòcan Sherry Cask
46% ABV
Non Chill Filtered
No Added Colouring
£59.00 – available at Whisky Galore at The Green Welly Stop

Nose.

Dunnage warehouse!!! I actually have this point of reference down since my Islay experience and visiting many warehouses. And this nose is full of it on first sniff. That alcohol maturing, oak, pleasant damp air of glorious Whisky angels feasting! Sorry! It’s awesome. :-). Second sniff. Light smoky wafts. Twig bonfire and earthy peat smoke. Deeper sniffs and where onto the spicy fruitcake influence of the sherry butts. Lots of rum and raisin. Fruitcake mix. Dry fruit. Cherries. Nuts. Lots of nuts amongst the alcohol soaked fruit. This is closest to Christmas cake I’ve had on the nose in a long time. Cinnamon, pepper, a touch of aniseed. Lots of complexity.

Palate.

Spicy arrival, little bit of heat from the 46%. As it calms we have an abundance of dried fruit, raisin, plum, cherries. Then the spiciness kicks it up a gear with the pepper, cinnamon and a touch of cardamom, the nuttiness then comes through with those spices and provides some nut skin and nut oil texture to the experience. Lots of sherry influence.

Finish.

Medium finish. Lots of nuts, some caramel, a touch of saltiness. Dried fruit, then drying out with a touch of cocoa. A slight touch of dry/charred grass.

Adding water.

4/5 drops added. The smoke is more concentrated on the medicinal, lighter style now, with the fruit and nut also diluted with the water in favour of some vanilla and floral characteristics coming through. The palate reflects this lighter nose, and adds the floral in, some rose water, lighter confectionary sugar notes, making the dram more accessible and less punchy. The finish is sweet, sugary, light and warming. Very nice, but preferred undiluted for me.

Conclusion.

A grand entry into the Tomatin stable. This is a great Christmas Whisky with all the lovely sherried notes which remind me of a good old winter’s dram.

Much thanks to Tomatin for the review sample.

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