Again a succesful story at my local liquor store. One whole liter of Cask Strength Bowmore for a very good price. Bought it spontaneously without knowing anything about it.
Nose: Without water it's a bit alcoholic, but not unapproachable. Pipe tobacco smoke, dirty peat, beach foam, yeast, candlewax, fertilizer, resin and raisins, elegant musky sherry wood. I cant really find any Bourbon cask influences. This is by far the dirtiest smelling Bowmore so far for me, which is good:) With water the peaty notes make way for more fruit.
Palate: Without water it's a heavy hitter, but like in the nose not over-overpowering. a Really concentrated, high density flavor profile, bone dry arrival and a feisty alcohol kick is what you get. Is this really a Bowmore? Its pretty brutal I must say. I get baked apples, tobacco, a tiny maple syrup sweetness, bramble juice, cherry wood, dark chocolate, big barley, cinnamon, hot chipotle sauce. With water it gets creamier and more nutty.
Finish: Huge finish, you get the typical Islay peat side of the lips sensation in a bone dry glow. So a lot of medicinal Islay peat, tarry wood, bandaid, iodine, sultana cookies, dark earth, distant oak, soft smoke.
This is one of the most beastly Bowmores I had so far and I already tried a few. Compared to other cask strengthers like the Tempest, 100 degrees proof, this is not so sweet, quite heavily peated and uncompromised, but still very much in a fragile balance. Normally you would go to Bowmore for the less heavy side of Islay, but not with this one, oh no. My guess is it was aged solely on Oloroso casks, but I don't know for sure for how long. Especially considering the price (I paid €40,-) this is a great deal, get it while its there.