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Bowmore Tempest 10 Year Old Batch 5

Average score from 3 reviews and 4 ratings 88

Bowmore Tempest 10 Year Old Batch 5

Product details

  • Brand: Bowmore
  • Bottler: Distillery Bottling
  • ABV: 55.9%
  • Age: 10 year old

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Bowmore Tempest 10 Year Old Batch 5

This is a long post but it's to compare both batches. I had the opportunity last year to trade a bottle of Tempest batch VI for a V  with @Nozinan through the kindest of whisky mules @Robert99. It was smartly suggested we trade a sample of each whisky along with it in order to taste the batch variances without opening our bottles. I am much overdue on my review of this but I don't think anyone was holding their breath for my opinion on this hot topic.

Bowmore Tempest V:

Nose: Bags of tropical fruits, sea spray, waxy lemons, the smoke is in the distance and it feels a bit closed at first. With time vanilla and oak become more prominent, along with a mineral and earthy peat also a sweet note like flower nectar.

Palate: Earthy, sweet, creamy and yet there's a good amount of lingering bitterness to keep it in check. Lemons and a kind of earthy spiciness (camphor, black cardamom) there is also an underlying soapy, floral, lavender tang that is slight but persistent even with water.

The strength is magnificent, it's easy to drink undiluted and powerfully conveys the flavours, the finish is long and all on sweet oak and gripping bitterness. 86/100 * I had some this weekend and bumped up my original assessment.

Bowmore Tempest VI:

Nose: Starts off on ripe pineapple, mango, sweet and musky melon, distant smoke and vinyl upholstery. It morphs into vanilla and damp oak and flint.

Palate: Earthy, malt syrup, bergamot, a bit of ashyness and coconut. Lemon pith, malty, orange flower water or petit-grain. Paraffin and with time a little antiseptic and oysters show up.

The finish is long and lingering, with water you get more oak, the bitter ashy side is reduced but still plenty of mineral and sea spray and lemon. 88/100

Impressions: While Stylistically both batches are very close, there are some slight differences, the nose on batch V really pushes the fruits forward and is such a beauty. Sadly I'm really sensitive to that soapy, bitter violet note on the palate. Batch VI feels well rounded if a bit oak forward. It's must try for those who haven't been moved much by the standard OB line-up of Bowmore.

The rant: Ah you can't get away from me complaining but I mean c'mon Suntory! The small batch experiments disappeared and all we are left with is this new NAS vault series shite. The first one landed on these shores recently at a whopping 199$, I know that never ending price argument but this release has no pretension to having any special or rare parcels of whisky, not that this would necessarily change much. When one could buy a 10 yr old cask strength, first fill bourbon cask whisky at 75$ less than a year prior, it's hard not to feel like they are taking the piss. We thought Devil's cask III at 100$+ was pushing it...we didn't know what was coming.

I think I've already said that I slightly preferred the V. I didn't get any soapiness or lavender. I may have to open a bottle to check ( stuck_out_tongue ). Maybe there was residue in your glass from washing? probably not...

I also lament the reduced availability of quality age-stated malts from this distillery (and others).

@Nozinan Agreed: I find the lack of Age Statements disturbing.


I first came across Bowmore Tempest in December 2015, when batch 5 appeared in Ontario. I was overwhelmed by its flavours, aromas, and mouthfeel. When batch 6 became available in Quebec I arranged a bottle and sample trade with @Cricklewood.

This bottle was opened in December 2015, gassed after each use, and had about 150 cc remaining when I poured today’s review dram. Noteworthy is that the bottle lists the ABV at 55.9% but the LCBO 55.1%.

This expression is reviewed in my usual manner, allowing it to settle after which I take my nosing and tasting notes, followed by the addition of a few drops of water, waiting, then nosing and tasting.

I am reviewing this and the batch 6 concurrently, and will provide a comparison at the end.


Neat – dry peat, slightly muted at the outset. With time the peat and lemon citrus peak through. 21/25

With water – Nose opens beautifully, lemon citrus integrates with the peat, with zest in the background (22/25)


Neat – Wave of peat. A touch spirity, sour and (a little) sweet, citrus zest in the development. Rich mouthfeel. This is powerful stuff! 22/25

With water – sweet arrival, sour development with peat supporting it, and an effervescence in the back of my palate. Grapefruit pith. Delicious (23/25)

Finish: Sour, astringent, fairly long. The peat lingers.22/25 with water the finish becomes more ashy with citrus (grapefruit) rind. (22/25)

Balance: I would not call this a complex whisky, with many layers to pick through. However, the flavours work very well together. 22/25

Score: Neat - 87 /100 With Water: 89/100

This is an excellent whisky. I am surprised at how quickly the bottle has been disappearing, with about 1 sixth of it left after only 6 months. Mind you, I’ve used it in a couple of tastings and given away some samples, but most bottles of Scotch in my cabinet have a much longer tenure.

I like this with a few drops of water, which really open it up. Comparing it to the batch 6, I think this one has a slight edge, but it’s hard to compare a first time taste of a sample with something I’ve enjoyed a few times.

Mixing the 2 together (in equal parts) was an absolute success.

Well, 2 months later I opened the vatting of 50:50 tempests 5 and 6.

The peat is muted, and the nose has a more syrupy quality but then disappears. The palate becomes a lot more bitter.

This reminds me a little of Springbank 12 YO CS in that it is "challenging". Only that seems to work with the Springbank.

This does not really work for me. Probably I would score it low 80s, but I may not finish the dram...

Interestingly, The batch 5 is now listed at LCBO for $79.50, with no bottles available, but when I bought it, it was $81.95.


THis is the 5th version of the 10yr tempest range. First fill bourbon casks, NCF bottled at cask strength.

Colour, amber.

Nose: Boom! It's a Bowmore! Smoke, Salt, Iodine, Vanilla and ripe melons.

Palate: Saline, pepper, not as smoky as the nose predicted but lovely sweet smoke none the less, peat & honey.

Finish: Lomg, smoke lingers, slight salt and pepper tang underlying honeyed melon.

Solid and very drinkable.

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