Every time the Smws is mentioned within a group of whisky people it splits the room, what starts as a simple discussion generally turns a little heated at times with strong opinions being thrown around.. But lets take a look at just what its about and try to take both sides whilst drinking a rather delicious Glen Moray released as part of the Gathering pack..
So, the Smws, an exclusive whisky club that has grown to be a worldwide phenomenon, originally started with the intention of buying a cask or two, splitting down so a group could enjoy the different whiskies has now turned into a group of thousands worldwide who clamber to get the latest release.. But lets remember these are still single casks and as we all know, single casks only give up a limited number of bottles so there will always be some disappointed people, that’s just life..
Just last night, i sat with a group of people who eventually got onto the topic of the Smws, and although the opinions were all over the place one thing did come out of it, that is the latest way of buying bottles just is not going down well.. It seems as though the queue system is replaced by a random generator, so you could get in the line for 30 minutes, someone gets in line as the bell sounds ( figuratively ) and be served first.. I can see why some are extremely upset with this, but then those who walk straight up are more than happy, again you cant please everyone.. Whats wrong with the old queue system i ask, first come first served in my opinion is the best and fairest way, add one bottle per person and it cant be much fairer that that..
Anyway, back to the club, from discussions, the prices do seem to be a lot fairer and the only downfall in my eyes is for those who live out in the sticks, you do seem to be paying for the opportunity to pay for a bottle..
Anyway lets move onto the bottle under scrutiny today.. 35-259, is for anyone not familiar with the coding system adopted by the Smws the code for Glen Moray.. A distillery that sits high on my list of distilleries i want to take note off.
24 Year old – first Fill Ex Bourbon Barrel
Taken from a single ex bourbon barrel this 24 year old was distilled on the 27th October 1995 and had an outturn of 222 bottles..
Distillery.. Glen Moray
Distilled.. 27th October 1995
Age.. 24 years
Cask.. First Fill Ex Bourbon
Nose.. A bowl full of fresh fruit, delicious syrup and a little honey drizzled over for extra sweetness.. Add to this some dark chocolate, orange rind and cinnamon and you wont be far from a glass full of this..
Palate.. Ginger snaps filled with cream, chocolate, snow balls and nice biscuits.. A little chocolate, cinnamon and even a little fried pineapple are all detectable, sprinkle a little candied rose petal and you are pretty much there..
Finish.. Soft spices and a little fruit..
Thoughts.. Refined and elegant pretty much sums this up..
With every visit you just fall deeper and deeper under its spell, right up to the point nothing else around you matters, its aromas linger and the taste stays with you, it just beckons you back, though the promise of that gives little satisfaction until you reach for that bottle, pop the cork and pour just a little more..