The Bowmore Vinter’s Trilogy is – as the name suggest – a trilogy of Bowmore with a link to wine. The three releases are the Bowmore 18 Manzanilla cask (sitting in front of me right now), the Bowmore 26 French Oak Barrique (wine cask) and the Bowmore 27 Port Cask. This 18 years old spent its first 13 years in former bourbon barrels and then was finished for another 5 years on manzanilla sherry casks. Manzanilla is the ‘lady of sherry’, a dry white wine from the Palomino grape and matured under the so-called flor.
The nose is round and grand, very aromatic. There is a lot going on here. It begins with vanilla and oranges (including candied peel with sugar on the edge), followed by baby breath (you know, the kids burps in your face right after his fruit porridge) and toffee apples. At the same time I get a ham on the barbecue with a layer of honey. Light brown sugar and nutmeg. This is very, very inviting.
The taste starts bittersweet with lots of spices. Think nutmeg, but also white pepper and even some caramelized ginger. Then the fruit hits you. All kinds of berries, nuts and apricots. Mango and a hint of almond paste. Towards the end there is also a salty note, which does not come as a surprise, but it pleasant indeed. From the second sip forward, it becomes a tad drying.
The finish is awesome: medium long and drying with both sweet and salty at the death.
Lovely Bowmore, but unfortunately hard to come by and quite expensive for an 18 years old.