A third in and yesterday I climbed to the fourth spot. I have no illusion of keeping this up, but so far I’m on quite a streak compared to other years. I actually managed to get points every day so far!
Today’s dram is rather dark in color so I expect it to be vastly different than the rather not-so-good Lochside that was yesterday’s. I did not like that one at all.
Massive sherry, the bitter kind. Lots of oak too, this smells very familiar. Yet, I don’t have a clue. There is some stewed fruit in there, pears, and maybe also some dried dates. Quite sweet and quite bitter. Behind it all is a thick layer of peat. Quite earthy with fried mushrooms and autumn leaves.
The palate isn’t overly sharp but there is some alcohol to it. The peat is prominent, but I’m not sure if I’m getting salty notes. Quite barbecue-y too, with nuts, mushrooms, that autumnal stuff I sniffed out. I’m doubting between port and sherry. And it just might be a dram I did earlier in that Port & Peat bottle-share. The BenRiach or the Longrow. There is some fruit, and I think I am getting the salty notes now. Dried red fruits, with some hazelnut.
Quite smoky at first, and the smoke even dissipates before the alcohol does. What remains is a bit of sea salt chocolate with a touch of nuttiness.
A second sip later I might be persuaded to go for a more Islay approach. It’s a delicious dram, let’s get that out of the way as well. Heavily influenced by the cask but not in a way that it is overpowering.
To go for specifics. After considering Longrow Red for a spell, I am going back to sherry after all. The salinity and fierceness don’t match with the Longrow and more with the Kilchoman from Abbey Whisky I recently had the joy of tasting. So that’s that…
It turned out to be the Bowmore Devil’s Casks II. Which I tasted and investigated before twice. The only excuse I can come up with is that the Kilchoman was tasted in the same period. Anyway, still absolutely love this dram. I wish I had gotten the three bottles Ewald used for this competition.
Bowmore Devil’s Casks II, 10yo, 56.3%. Long gone by now. Expect to pay heaps in auctions.