Scotch Malt Whisky Society Canada April 2013 Outturn

The Calgary home of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society Canada hosted 3 sold out tastings on Friday April 5th and Saturday the 6th to showcase the latest releases. The April release consists of 6 new single cask Scotch whiskies, 5 single malts and one grain. This month’s releases were as follows:

  1. Scotch Malt Whisky Society 48.31: Honey & flowers in a knicker drawer – 53.1% – 23 Year – Speyside – 2nd Fill Sherry Butt – Outturn: 262 Bottles – Panel’s Tasting Note: “The rich, rewarding nose delivered marzipan, caramel, chocolate digestives, Battenberg cake, honey and beeswax polish; someone detected floral incense, someone else a tin of Lakeland pencils and the Lady-poet was rummaging in her knicker drawer. The unreduced palate had velvety chocolate and Mayan cocoa – also buttered toast, caramel and salty toffee – then light, sweet smoke,woody notes, pepper and chilli. The reduced nose produced more cereal notes (honey nut clusters) syrup, bread dough and green leaves. The palate now had warm toffee flavours, buttered brioche,Cadbury’s Fruit and Nut and mild poppadom in the finish. The distillery is near Cromdale.” Drinking Tip: “A handy standby dram for sharing with friends, but easy on the water.” - $176.49
  2. Scotch Malt Whisky Society G1.8: A bag of assorted boiled sweets - 62.9% – 21 Year – Refill Hogshead Ex-Bourbon – Grain Whisky – Outturn: 211 Bottles - Panel’s Tasting Note: “Lots of fruit on the early nose (pear flan, rhubarb, lemon curd,apricot) growing richer in the glass – soon we found marzipan,fudge, toffee, Bakewell tart, butterscotch, vanilla and straw. Thepalate was just as fruity but also sweet and nippy (some found itfiery) – like a bag of assorted boiled sweets. In reduction, the nosesplit between citric components and banana toffee – also somedustiness, like rubbing butter into flour. The palate opened andbecame cleaner and fresher, but evaporation from the tongue leftrich joys of tobacco, liquorice and dark chocolate Bounty bars.From Edinburgh’s only grain distillery.” Drinking Tip: “A summertime dram – or maybe whilemaking cakes.” - $174.99 – SOLD OUT!
  3. Scotch Malt Whisky Society 35.67: Winter spice for the summer - 63.2% – 23 Year – Refill Hogshead Ex-Bourbon – Speyside – Outturn: 239 Bottles -Panel’s Tasting Note: “A smorgasbord of neat aromas – greasy workshops, musty dunnage warehouse, hot wet wood, lightly citric, hazelnut  , raisins, dates, cinnamon, brine and camphor. The taste was HOT like fireball gobstoppers, bitter orange syrup,cloves, young cognac or Spanish brandy, green wood and winter spices. The addition of water brought out green notes of grapes,leaves with light wood smoke, fresh mint with yogurt, dusty wood in the background. The palate was still hot now with lots of orange – chocolate, sorbet, Campinos, tangerine skins, all with a soft cinnamon honey coating. This Elgin based distillery ceased floor maltings in 1978.” Drinking Tip: “A summer holiday dram.” - $181.49
  4. Scotch Malt Whisky Society 4.167: Flapjacks & OJ’s cereal - 54.7% – 16 Year – Refill Hogshead Ex-Bourbon – Highland, Island – Outturn: 212 Bottles - Panel’s Tasting Note: The initial nose is savoury, oily and slightly mineralic developing sweeter and deeper notes of butter scones, honeycomb, vanilla ice-cream and liquorice whilst smoke is in the background from distant burnt heather fields. To taste neat, sweet and fresh like a peppermint flavoured Polo with some grassy and green leaves from a hedgerow appearing. Smoke from a BBQ charcoal fire and in the finish orange zest and the slight bitterness of a grapefruit. With water, sweet and floral notes of Love Hearts and orange blossom in the nose followed by a cereal note, buttery, honeyed flapjacks  and Carmack bars. The taste is now like warm melted butter, burnt caramel but also mouth watering fresh, mint leaves or mint sauce from the most northerly distillery.” Drinking Tip: “Twice a day, every day.” - $147.99
  5. Scotch Malt Whisky Society 3.187: Camphor muscle oil & Russian caramel - 57.2% – 14 Year – Refill Sherry Butt – Islay – Outturn: 608 Bottles - Panel’s Tasting Note: “We start off in a cottage in the morning clearing out the peat fire and end up in a rugby changing room with medicinal aromas like camphor muscle oil and deep heat rub. The initial taste is hot and smoky – just like having re lit the peat fire for breakfast with the smell of hot chocolate and sweet oolong tea filling the room.Adding water gives the impression of dousing an open peat fire with some tarry and earthy notes coming to the fore. In the taste,sweet like a Russian caramel; a toffee with a soft chewy centre dipped in dark chocolate. The finish, from the oldest working distillery on Islay, leaves you with a lingering smoky and slightly peppery aftertaste.” Drinking Tip: “On a cold night or morning by the fire.” - $126.99
  6. Scotch Malt Whisky Society 66.32: The Roly-Poly pudding - 58.6% – 13 Year – Refill Sherry Gorda – Highland – Outturn: 752 Bottles - Panel’s Tasting Note: “Raw dough with a whiff of smoke. Dusty, coal smuts: we thought of Beatrix Potter’s story about Tom Kitten… Over time the smokiness increases, soon joined by light medicinal notes (sphagnum moss,Swarfega hand wash), while the dough becomes more buttery, like Aberdeen ‘rowies’ (a buttery form of croissant). The taste is sweet,clean and hot, with light sulphur, antiseptic and peaty elements.Water raises European oak notes (struck matches) for a moment,then bread and butter pudding, and now the taste has treacle toffee, salty butter and charred toast in the finish. Famously smoky for an Aberdeenshire malt.” Drinking Tip: “Reading Beatrix Potter beside an unlit fireplace.” – $117.49

In the writer’s humble opinion, the two standouts were 48.31 and 3.187, with the latter being by far the best selling of all the whiskies released.

Previous Releases Still Available

  1. A4 – $170.99
  2. 3.188 – $130.49
  3. 3.189 - $127.49 *Only 4 left!
  4. 3.193 – $130.99
  5. 4.165 – $174.49 *Only 4 left!
  6. 4.166 – $139.99
  7. 5.35 – $116.99
  8. 9.66 – $126.99
  9. 29.121 – $164.99
  10. 30.70 – $170.99 * Only 6 left!
  11. 30.71 - $127.49
  12. 30.72 - $110.99
  13. 36.58 – $102.99
  14. 37.52 – $102.99
  15. 39.82 – $120.49
  16. 39.83 – $208.99 *Just 3 left!
  17. 41.52 – $100.99 *Only 7 left!
  18. 44.53 – $170.99
  19. 53.168 – $142.99
  20. 63.27 – $88.49
  21. 66.32 – $117.49
  22. 73.54 – $164.99 *Only 7 left!
  23. 76.89 – $133.99
  24. 76.92 – $198.49
  25. 106.18 – $197.99 *Only 4 left!
  26. 121.54 –  $102.99 *Just 3 left!
  27. 121.55 – $122.99
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