SMWS 5.70 “In the absence of convention” Auchentoshan 18 Year (2000)

Scotch Review #92: SMWS 5.70 “In the absence of convention” Auchentoshan 18 Year (2000)

Distillery: Auchentoshan

Bottler: SMWS

Region: Lowland

Cask Info: 1st Fill Ex-Oloroso Hogshead Finish

ABV: 56.3%, Cask Strength

Age: 18 Year, Distilled Oct/11/2000

Price: Sample courtesy of /u/matt5784

Color: 1.4, Tawny. Non-Chill Filtered, Natural Color.

Nose (according to the wife): Slightly sweet. Lots and lots of golden raisins. There’s a hint of sherry but it’s basically all raisins.

Palate: Very thick mouthfeel. It’s a warm dram with baking spices (cloves and cinnamon) in it. There is a nice bit of hot apple cider and warm apple pie that tie in with these spices as well. Notes of golden raisins pop in and out throughout. With a bit of water, a very slight trace bit of cherry comes out as well.

Finish: Long. More of those warm baking spices dominate the finish along with orange peels. With water, there’s a bit of oak that pops through along with a nutty note creating a slightly drying effect.

Conclusion: SMWS has been a curiosity for me that I’ve finally been able to explore slightly thanks to this sample by /u/matt5784. I have to say, it is a delightful dram. The nose is slightly underwhelming by being incredibly straightforward but the palate is wonderful. The apple cider, apple pie, along with the baking spices, raisins, and that little bit of cherry are absolutely delicious. It is, however, one I wish I’d saved for a very cold day as I feel like I would’ve appreciated it a little more. The finish is nice and long, the baking spices continue and I did enjoy the slightly drying effect after a bit of water was added. Overall, a good dram. Would I buy a bottle? Maybe, but it’s not enough to make me want to buy a SMWS membership though.

Final Score: 84.

Scotch Whisky review #92, Lowland Whisky Review #4, Whisky Network Review #120

Scoring Legend:

  • 96-100: The perfect dram, nectar of the gods.
  • 90-95: Near perfect, there is something truly special about this whisky.
  • 85-89: Amazing, will always try to keep a bottle of this in my collection (if feasible).
  • 80-84: Very Good, maybe only one minor nitpick about the whisky keeping it here.
  • 75-79: Good, quite enjoyable to drink.
  • 70-74: Solid, wouldn’t go out of my way to get it.
  • 60-69: Meh, still drinkable.
  • Below 59: If you have a bottle of this, start cooking with it instead.

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