The Bowmore No. 1 should be seen as the new entry level malt. It is friendly priced, bottled at drinking strength and easy to find. No age statement, but I guess that is no longer an issue, or is it? It matured exclusively on first fill bourbon casks.
The nose is sweet and fresh on vanilla, apples, grapes, lime (including zest) and lots of sea salt. A classic Bowmore if you ask me. The smoke is in the background, making it fresh and accessible. In that sense, it really reminds me of the Small Batch from a few years ago.
I would not have minded a little bit more body. On the palate too, it is very fruity and sweet, while the peat is a lot more outspoken. It even flirts with tropical notes, which I quite like. Loads of vanilla too. Yes, again, I am reminded of the Small Batch.
The finish is not very long, but with a lovely smokiness and a touch of mint. Vanilla and citrus remains present throughout.
This really is a twin of the Small Batch, albeit somewhat cheaper. Around 35 EUR. A nice entry for people who are not yet familiar with Islay whisky.