Glen Moray 1994-2016, 21yo, 55.5% – SMWS (35.159 – Waves of Intensity)

One of these samples that I found in my stash when selecting which drams to bring on the summer holiday. I only looked it up now and saw that it was drawn from a ‘toasted hogshead’, which is an interesting thing. There are probably quite some whiskies out there from toasted casks, but apart from some 14 year old Glenfiddich from years ago, I can’t think of any.

This 21 year old from the SMWS is not something that would normally spark my interest, but I think I got the sample based on a recommendation by Ben Cops. He is kind of a regular customer of SMWS whiskies.

So, this review has been idling in my ‘to post’ list for quite a while now, and I decided to review it today since in eight days I’ll finally be touring Glen Moray. I’ve visited the shop once before, because we had about 45 minutes to kill before we had to head on to BenRiach in 2013. Now we’re going to be in the area again, and I wanted to do a tour on which I can bring the kids. I think they need to see why daddy loves whisky so much, and a first hand experience like that could help a lot!


Image from Whisky Auctioneer

Sweet and very fruity with hints of mango, pear and peach. Some custard like hints in the background. A gentle oakiness too.

A lot stronger than the nose suggests, with quite some alcohol heat. Still sweet and lots of tropical fruit. Peach, nectarine, mango. The heat turns into dry oak.

Dry on the finish, with a firm afterburner. Very warming and a hint of the light spirit shines through. Rather long.

Gorgeous! I didn’t really know what to expect when I opened it, but I was very pleasantly surprised. I think, in general, the SMWS and Glen Moray are a very good partnership with some splendid results in the past. This one fits that list nicely and it’s one of those whiskies I wouldn’t mind having a bottle of!

The toasted oak is an interesting twist and makes it a lot fruitier than I’d normally expect. What’s interesting is that, at least to me, it starts to taste more like a sherry cask than it normally would. This goes some way to underscore the importance of oak, although I do think the fruity spirit of Glen Moray is a large factor as well.


Glen Moray 1994-2016, 21 years old, 1st fill Toasted Hogshead, 55.5%, SMWS 35.159 “Waves of Intensity”. Of course this is only available through the secondary market and should cost around 100 euros.


About Sjoerd de Haan-Kramer

I'm very interested in booze, with a focus on whisky. I like to listen to loads of music and play lots of Magic: the Gathering, and board games too. I'm married to Anneke, have two daughters Ot and Cato, a son Moos and a cat called Kikker (which means Frog, in Dutch). I live in Krommenie, The Netherlands.
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