...where distraction is the main attraction.

Tuesday, September 25, 2018

Loch Lomond Weak? Inchmurrin 13 year old 2000 SMWS 112.7

After yesterday's mostly successful whisky, perhaps I should stop poking fun at Loch Lomond. SMWS on the other hand...

Eh, I'll give them a pass if this whisky works. They give this whisky one of their soberer names: "Youthful vigour in a barrel prison". Should that vigour give one a moment's pause knowing the distillery, or should one go back and read the first sentence of this post?

Okay, I'll be honest. I already did this tasting, lining this 13yo up with yesterday's 14yo. They are indeed different whiskies.

Distillery: Loch Lomond
Brand: Inchmurrin
Owner: Loch Lomond Distillery Company
Region: Highlands (Western)
Independent bottler: Scotch Malt Whisky Society
Age: 13 years (27 Sept 2000 to 2014)
Maturation: Jail?
Cask number112.7
Outturn: 209
Alcohol by Volume: 58.5%
(thanks to Brett P for the sample!)

The nose is all vanilla, oak spice and cardboard at first. With some airing out, notes of fresh cherries, apples, black licorice and bubblegum come out. Then it all vanishes after 20 minutes, leaving behind nothing but heat. The palate is sweet, tart, slightly bitter and very new make-y. Cinnamon sticks and burning face. Its sourness starts small, then gradually takes over everything. So much heat in the finish. Very tart raw spirit. A tiny bit of vanilla, sugar and bitterness.

A bucket of water, please.

DILUTED TO ~46%abv, or 1⅔tsp of water to 30mL whisky
Nosehair singeing heat. Vanilla simple syrup. Wood smoke. Cardboard. Stop. The palate is hotter, rawer, pepperier, saltier, sweeter, cardboardier. The finish is very hot and very sweet.

Swim, ye evil spirit!

DILUTED TO ~40%abv, or about 1tbsp of water to 30mL whisky
Hmm, not bad. The nose shows barley, anise and mint leaves. The palate is much more pleasant. It's minty and spicy, with plenty of fresh ginger. Less sweet, less heat. It finishes with mint and ginger, and a mild sweetness.

The problem wasn't the incarceration. It's the prison itself. More time in this jail would not have helped. The prisoner probably would have burned the place down, anyway.

The official tasting notes for this thing are Ridic (as the kids say). The international whisky world is full of palate wreckers with actual positive qualities at full strength. So there's nothing to recommend when this whisky is neat. But! At 40%abv it starts to hit its stride. I suppose a masochist could spend some time chopping this whisky's ABV down further and further to find its money spot. Anyway, Loch Lomond is not at fault here.

Availability - Secondary market, I guess
Pricing - ???
Rating - 71 (with lots of water only; at least 10 points lower when neat)