Scotch Malt Whisky Society April 2016 Outturn

April’s Scotch Malt Whisky Society Canada tasting was a unique one, and one of the strongest Outturns we’ve had in months. We had our first SMWS Bourbon, B3.3: Treacle buns in a sawmill, a unique offering from Arkansas. We also had two trios of Scottish single malts, opening with three Speysiders and closing with tree peated Islay whiskies. Two of the whiskies were so successful they are now sold out: 48.67: Godzilla vanilla and 3.228: A deep, brooding masterpiece. There were no weak links, with strong demand for all 7 whiskies. Here is the April 2016 Scotch Malt Whisky Society Outturn:

  1. 39.113: An explosion of playfuness – 57% – 15 Year – Refill Hogshead – Speyside - Flavour profile: Young & spritely - Outturn: 300 bottles - Panel’s tasting note: “The nose was light and mild – fruity, sweet aromas of ‘flying saucers’ candies, sherbet, Edinburgh Rock candy, vanilla, limoncello, grapefruit and talc were prevented from wafting away on the breeze by a ballast of pine, tree bark, basketry and cinnamon spice. The palate was youthful and lively; fizzy sherbet and ‘popping candy mixed with gunpowder’ exploded on our tongues – flavours included lemon, orange zest and yellow gummy bears – maybe a hint of perfumed bath bombs. With water, the nose found flowers, wood sap, lipstick and tea. The palate, now more playful than lively, suggested yellow coconut Liquorice Allsorts and cakes in waxed paper.” Drinking tip: “As a palate cleanser – or in place of sparkling wine at a celebration” – $165
  2. 48.67: Godzila vanila57.6% – 13 Year – 1st Fill Barrel – Speyside - Flavour profile: Juicy, oak & vanilla - Outturn: 78 bottles - Panel’s tasting note:  ”The nose set the tone – a triumphant triumvirate of fruit (orange, mango, pear, peach, strawberries), sweetness (chocolate, caramelized sugar) and cask-wood influence (oak, turmeric, pepper). The palate followed through – mouth-watering tropical fruits, including apricots and banana smoothie got our taste-buds doing the tarantella and the cask supplied nutmeg and vanilla – not just a scintilla of vanilla but enough to fill a villa. Similar story on the reduced nose –  honey flirted with passion-fruit and minty mojitos – a bitter-sweet romance, while oak stung the tongue with Japanese mustard. The reduced palate – pineapple, kiwi, toffee apple and lemon with full-on bourbon spice – proper lush!” Drinking tip: “A good digestif – but actually, any time at all” – $150
  3. 7.126: It’s gone nuts! - 57.9% – 11 Year – 1st Fill Barrel – Speyside –  Flavour profile: Spicy & sweet - Outturn: 210 bottles - Panel’s tasting note: “The nose was rich with honey spiced toddy and lozenges oozing golden syrup. Toasted flaked almonds topped amaretti biscuits and roasted peaches with pistachios. Hints of pear drop and pine planks lingered before an orange explosion: jaffa cake with dark chocolate, tangerines and orange blossom. Nuts popped up again, this time salty and layered between mille-feuille pastry, like baklava with chestnut honey. Water relaxed the heat and delivered sugar roasted almonds, dried cherry and cranberry, raisin and fig. Sweet red pesto, spiced pears and chunky marmalade before a final rumble of brazil, walnut, macadamia and wasabi peanuts. Cracking stuff!” - Drinking tip: “Let your hair down with this one”- $135
  4. B3.3: Treacle buns in a sawmill – 54.3% – 2 Year – New Charred Oak Barrel – Bourbon: Arkansas - Flavour profile: Spicy & sweet - Outturn: 221 bottles - Panel’s tasting note: “The nose engulfed us with drifts of molasses and thuds of wood (toasted oak, cinnamon) summarized by one comment – ‘Treacle buns in a sawmill’; brighter colours in the rainbow of sweetness included honey, raspberry pop-tarts and banana loaf. Adding water magically drew out the bakery element (Danish pastries with apricot jam and cherry, croissant with marmalade) and the aromatics (Christmas spice Yankee candles, pot-pourri, pumpkin pie). The palate, unsurprisingly, was hugely sweet (vanilla pod sugar, corn candies, blueberry muffins, pancakes smothered in boysenberry syrup) but all neatly balanced by grape seed and dried cranberry tartness and warming wood-derived spices.” Drinking tip: “With an all-day breakfast which, of course, must include pancakes” – $175
  5. 3.228: A deep, brooding masterpiece – 46% – 26 Year – 2nd Fill Sherry Butt – Islay - Flavour profile: Old & dignified - Outturn: 206 bottles - Panel’s tasting note: At first there were blackberries, then salted caramel sweets and freshly baked gingerbread men. Light, measured peat, rich Soreen Malt Loaf and beautiful amoroso sweetness  combined. Then, a fizz on the tongue with Love Hearts, Seville oranges and redcurrants. Hints of Pears soap, sweet charcoal dust and eucalyptus sung softly, whilst the understated smoke provided a steady bass-line.  Some were taken to a fireside in a log cabin, while others walked on a beach in the rain. We enjoyed spare ribs with a sticky soy glaze followed by a handful of Edinburgh Rock candy. Bakewell tarts, smoke and lavender to finish. Harmonious:  Everything in its right place.” Drinking tip: “Enjoy under doom laden skies” – $243.99
  6. 53.216: BBQ in pine-clad dunes - 60.6% – 21 Year – Refill Sherry Butt – Islay - Flavour profile: Lightly peated - Outturn: 597 - Panel’s tasting note: “After the bonfire in the hospital parking lot we went to the pine-clad dunes and started the barbecue for our dinner consisting of honey-glazed smoked ham, gammon steak, whole mackerel with lemon, oregano, olives and Ayrshire new potatoes with sour cream and parsley. The taste neat therefore no surprise, sweet cured ham, pork sausages and a lingering mild sweet peat smoke. With water the food turned into steamed mussels and cockles, Arbroath Smokies and herring salad in a sour cream sauce. The taste now sweet and juicy like a grilled gammon steak with caramelized pineapple slices.” Drinking tip: “For your evening barbecue by the sea”- $213.99
  7. 29.167: WOWF! – 58.6% – 20 Year – Refill Barrel – Islay - Flavour profile: Peated - Outturn: 211 bottles - Panel’s tasting note: “The nose brimmed with peat smoke, coal cellars, antiseptic cream, coal-tar soap, salted liquorice, toasted coconut, treacle, sea-shells and a barber’s leather strop. The palate produced at least one ‘Wowf!’ (between a Wow and a Woof, apparently), with its kiln-smouldering peat, roasted coffee beans, figs, honey-flavoured Fisherman’s Friends, and walnuts and lavender in a coal sack – rather unusual, but good. The reduced nose was tamer – brown sugar meringues, banana chips, salted almonds, honeyed lemon and salty olives. The palate found honey cake and dry hay, but still the heavier memories of salty coal and sweet smoke weighed satisfyingly on our manna-receiving tongues.” Drinking tip: “Would probably work with food – preferably a spread of tapas in the open air”- $204.99

You can view all available Scotch Malt Whisky Society whiskies, including past releases on our Society Pages.

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