12 February 2019

Bowmore Cask Strength

Bowmore and the taste of kiwi, to me they are inseparable. I’ve tasted lots of different Bowmores, but this one thing always keeps coming back. It took me a while though, it was just this spark of enlightenment some years ago, when I tried to figure out what that specific note tastes like.

Let me explain this. It’s that briny, lightly medical and subtly sour hint that tickles your tongue and fits Bowmore’s signature style very well. Kiwis tend to give this weird prickly sensation on your tongue. Most Bowmores do the same to me, and that makes me always guess the distillery when tasting blind. Fun fact: I tasted a Tamnavulin 12yo some months ago, and I thought it was an unpeated Bowmore.

The Bowmore that has the most kiwi in it (as far as I tasted) is the Bowmore 15yo Mariner. This Bowmore Cask Strength is from the same (travel retail) range, which is now discontinued and sadly not replaced by anything that comes close. From what I tasted from the latest Bowmores, they all felt a bit watered down. So I’m glad I’m still able to enjoy this sipper, which has (partly?) matured on sherry casks and went for €40 euros for a whole litre. So let’s forget about the non-age-statement and the colouring this time and just focus on the tasting notes:

Tasting notes


Spicy wood, tropical, briny, cherry and apples. A delicate freshness.


Dry and salty at first, before the red fruits and barley. It’s fresh and sweet at the same time.


There it is: the unmistakable hint of kiwi, along with sea salt, citrus, candy canes, slightly medical notes, floral, drying, orange zest, pepper, gentle peat and a hint of latex.

Incredibly easy to enjoy and a bang for your buck from a time not too long ago.

Let’s see, do you also taste kiwi, or is it just me (and Dion)?

Bowmore Cask Strength