Bowmore 9 Year Old was released in September 2016 – it proves that the old sacred 10 Year Old age statement is not sacred any more. It’s matured in Oloroso sherry casks but apparently there are classic bourbon casks in the mix as well. Also, despite the label saying ‘limited release’ most shops claim it is a permanent addition to their range. Not sure what to believe any more, and the official Bowmore website has been down for days now. Hello?
Sherried whisky from Islay is not that common, especially not in the lower end of the market. And this is fairly priced, what’s not to like? A slightly higher ABV would be welcome, but other than that it looks promising… on paper.
Bowmore 9 yo ‘Sherry Cask Matured’
(40%, OB 2016)
Nose: a slightly funky nose. The expected dried fruits don’t stand out much, they’re overtaken by some (mild) rubbery notes and wet cardboard. Light creosote. Then some shy oranges and something of a red berry wax candle. Light raisins, pepper and some sea spray. Hmmmokay.
Mouth: salty smoke, certainly more maritime than it is peaty. Still some of the rubbery notes, but what surprises mostly is the watery middle. Clove juice, hints of sour tobacco. Charcoal and hints of raisins.
Finish: not too long, with some burnt woody touches and tobacco.
Around € 40, sometimes found as low as € 25. That makes it one of the cheapest sherry matured single malts out there. That said it’s certainly a budget offering which lacks punch and structure. Quite a disappointment after their Devil’s Casks or their ex-bourbon youngster.