Scotch Malt Whisky Society of Canada March 2019 Outturn

by Evan

In case you are a member have not read the recent SMWS email regarding the club’s quarterly magazine: You now can view the current issue of Unfiltered Magazine (and a decade of back issues!) online by logging in at

As an SMWS member, you have the option of accessing the online version and continuing to receive the hard copy or opting out of the hard copy altogether and accessing the no-paper version only.

Quite a different Outturn this month. Let us take a look at some stats:

  • Not just one, but TWO Lowland malts in one single Outturn? Has the world gone mad?!? One of these Lowlanders features the now old-style bottle look. It has been a few months (not since August of 2018 I believe) since we have seen one of those. Over time they are becoming more and more rare to see.
  • Not just one, but TWO triple-distilled single malts as well. One of the previously mentioned Lowlanders is well known for only Triple-Distilling their malt. The other comes to us from a certain historic distillery in Northern Ireland
  • There is no Islay malt to be seen in this Outturn. Instead, we see peat from a personal favourite distillery of mine that resides on the Isle of Mull and carries a number that represents the meaning of Life, The Universe, and Everything. By a twist of fate that also happens to be my personal SMWS Canada Member Number.
  • The other is from a workhorse distillery in the Highlands, known for its use in the Teachers Highland Cream Blended Scotch, but also sought after by peated whisky lovers and independent bottlers alike.
  • Peat haters rejoice! This is probably the least peaty Outturn I have been part of. Typically numbers 6 and 7 in any Outturn lineup will have a moderate to heavy amount of peat to them, but not this one! Number 6 is coastal and oily, but if there is peat to it, I didn’t recognize it myself. Number 7 is peaty, but it is a soft, easy peat to the point that sweetness takes over on the palate in a beautiful way.
  • The March Outturn bottles range in age from 9 to 24 years old, and prices run between $148 on the low end to $236 on the high. Only two of the bottles tip-in at more than $200 each.

Curious about other SMWS releases? We have stock of many recent Outturn bottles. Past Outturns themselves can be viewed on our blog here. You can browse what is available for past releases here. If any SMWS bottles show as being out of stock on our website please contact us – we might be able to get more.

As always we would like to give a big thank-you to our awesome neighbour’s Peasant Cheese for supplying the small bites for the tastings.

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Here is your March of 2019 SMWS Canada Outturn:

This 10 year old Speysider is 57.7% after maturing in a 1st fill barrel.
Flavour profile: Spicy and dry.
Outturn: 244 bottles.
Panel’s tasting note: “Tropical murmurs suggested an aromatic undercurrent of ripe melon, coconut body oil and rum punch laced with liquorice. The curiously seductive waft of musk perfume unveiled floral tones as talcum powder merged with the lychee-laden fruit of Gewurztraminer wine. Shortcrust pastry expanded the oily richness before turning towards herbal realms and strong black tea. The palate carried the lively zing of gooseberry tart but blended seamlessly with red berries, cinnamon, nutmeg and star anise. A butter pastry element led us to cherry pie before turning to juniper berries and a finish of fresh green twigs.”

This 16 year old from Northern Ireland is 54.5% after maturing in a 1st fill barrel.
Flavour profile: Juicy, oak & vanilla.
Outturn: 205 bottles.
Panel’s tasting note: “This is no wallflower! The generous nose begins with polished old mahogany tables, orange oil, potpourri, rum n raisin chocolate, liquorice, cherry cough drops and rich gravy made with cranberry jelly. The taste is pleasingly unusual and ‘funky’ – intensely sweet and floral (roses) with an abundance of red fruits and some herbs. The floral and fruity theme continues when you add water – it’s fresh and vibrant with hothouse flowers (geranium), tropical fruits (melon and mango), fruity boiled sweets, herbs and wine. The sweet taste provides juicy overripe tropical fruits, vanilla syrup and herbs. Unusual but rewarding.”

This 17 year old Lowlander is 58.6% and was transferred to a 1st fill Oloroso hogshead after maturing for 15 years in an ex-bourbon hogshead.
Flavour profile: Sweet, fruity & mellow.
Outturn: 261 bottles.
Panel’s tasting note: “The Panel found this one surprisingly mature for the age. The nose revealed notes of cloudy lemonade, blood orange, celery salt, sultanas, wet earth, shoe polish, chamois leather and peach stone. Some dark chocolate, date puree and fig rolls all slosh about in the depths. With water it gave up quince paste, orange oils, lemon rind, aged Moscatel, marjoram and a clove studded orange in mulling wine. The palate was full of orange bitters, prune juice, maraschino cherry with preserved lemon and a big slug of strong Manhattan cocktail. Some apple crumble and vanilla follow on. Reduction reveals more orange notes, some dried herbs and assorted spices with salted caramel going soft in the pocket of a wax jacket. Matured for 15 years in an ex-bourbon hogshead before being transferred to an Oloroso sherry hogshead for the remainder of its maturation.”

This 24 year old Lowlander was matured in a refill barrel and comes in at 59.1%.
Flavour profile: Sweet & spicy.
Outturn: 121 bottles.
Panel’s tasting note: “This complex, lively dram did not appeal to everyone’s taste. The nose had delightful sweetness (spun sugar, toffee apples, marzipan, Daim bars) and fruitiness in the form of stewed plums and cherry brandy; but we also detected butterfly wing-beats of rubber, dried flowers and linseed oil. Water brought out sultana loaf, rum and raisin truffles and Soreen malt loaf. The palate offered tangy but sweet toffees in a tin and candy necklaces, plus deeper notes of leather, rubber, caramelized onions and black pepper. Water softened the palate to Coco Pops and cappuccino with hints of Christmas spice – much more drinkable in reduction.”

This 10 year old Speysider was matured in a 1st fill sherry butt and is 64.3%.
Flavour profile: Deep, rich and dried fruits.
Outturn: 645 bottles.
Panel’s tasting note: “The sherry’s voice was loud and clear to the panel in this one. Immediate notes of furniture wax, shoe polish, wet earth, strawberry jam and tinned pineapple emerged alongside some touches of plum sauce and date compote. Water gave us brown bread, toasted pumpkin seeds, olive oil, muesli, crushed oatcakes and orange juice. A high octane Old Fashioned. The palate was immediately spicy with tamarind, spiced chutney, mango puree, lean tannins, bitter chocolate, demerara sugar and black tea, with some evolution towards dried orange rind and pipe tobacco. With water we found notes such as maraschino liqueur, bacon fries, salted beef and a pin prick of wasabi! There were also drops of Drambuie and marmalade on rye bread.”

This 9 year old from the Highland Islands is 62% after maturing in a refill barrel.
Flavour profile: Oily & coastal.
Outturn: 205 bottles.
Panel’s tasting note: “Initially like a ‘fresh-from-the-sea’ shellfish platter with sweet shrimps, briny clams, white crab meat and succulent scallops. With time, sweet chocolate candies in the form of marine shellfish, coconut balls and cherry kernel oil made this a really complex nose worth discovering. The taste neat surprised us with plenty of heat, wasabi and sweet pepper & onion relish as we reached for the water. Maritime aromas of an old sea chest, sea salted popcorn and sugar kelp appeared whilst on the palate now it was more approachable. A salty dog cocktail served with a bowl of Bombay mix snacks and salted, malted chocolate cupcakes.”

This 11 year old from the Highlands comes in at 55.4% and was matured in a refill hogshead.
Flavour profile: Lightly peated.
Outturn: 251 bottles.
Panel’s tasting note: “We imagined sitting under an umbrella (in the sun!) by the sea, and having a picnic with smoky griddled sardines and sweet tomato chutney followed by pig’s cheek with kale and celeriac mash. When we tasted neat someone was reminded of dill pickle soup with smoked ham – sounds weird? Perhaps, but if you do like pickles why not give it a go, a truly hearty, savoury, creamy and very comforting dish. When we added a few drops of water descriptors of food continued as we were served a squid, mint and coriander salad with roasted rice.”

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