Bowmore Distillery can be located on the Isle of Islay and produce medium-peated single malt whiskies. They are oldest distillery on the Isle of Islay and claim to be the oldest distillery in Scotland, however I believe Glenturret may have something to say in that regard. So as it stands, Bowmore MAY be the oldest legally operating distillery in the country, but others were illicitly distilling some 40 years prior to Bowmore opening in 1779. But I digress.
Bowmore are in a dying breed of distilleries that still floor-malts their barley, however their production (and sales) has grown more rapidly than their facilities requiring them to purchase malted barley externally to meet their annual haul of two million litres.
The Bowmore 15 Darkest is called so as it is the darkest whisky to be added to the distilleries core range. It is bottled at 43%. It has been matured in ex-bourbon casks for 12 of its 15 years before being finished in Oloroso sherry casks. This is where it piqued my interest. 3 years is a substantial finishing period and I was excited for the fruit notes that would bring. Of course, I have to mention that as with all the distilleries core range, the whisky is chill filtered.
Glance: Dark amber.
Nose: Stued fruit, dark chocolate, white pepper and orange rind.
Taste: Much more peat and ABV forward than I expected from the nose and I mean that in a good way. Dried fruit mix, cocoa, Pepper, fresh oak, salt brine and leather
Finish: Medium length. Good hit of smoke that is further enhanced by the sherry casks richer fruit profiles. Slightly medicinal, butterscotch and Chrismas cake and glazed fruits.
The average standard price that I could find for the for The Bowmore 15 Darkest is $120, which is extremely reasonable for a whisky at that age and finish.
All said and done, I find this to be a very competent whisky for it’s price point and I give it 3.5 / 5
If you want to try it for yourself, now is the time to do it. Travelling Whisky reviews has partnered with Uisuki to bring you our first monthly bottle offer and we have chosen the Bowmore 15 Darkest to do so.
Click the Uisuki advertising banner or head to https://www.uisuki.com.au/products/travelling-whisky-review-members/ to get the bottle at $89 for August only and until stock runs out! Further more, if you live in Melbourne, buy another bottle (or more) at the same time and local delivery for your entire purchase can be arranged free of charge.