SMWS 122.43 “Conjuring Up All Sorts of Images” Croftengea 9 Year (2012)

Scotch Whisky Review #433: SMWS 122.43 “Conjuring Up All Sorts of Images” Croftengea 9 Year (2012)

Distillery: Loch Lomond.

Bottler: SMWS.

Region: Highland.

Age: 9 Year. Distilled on March 27 2012 and bottled in 2021.

ABV: 61.9%.

Price: Day 6 of Advent Calendar (see below).

Color: 0.4, Jounquil / Ripe Corn. Natural Color and Non Chill Filtered.

This dram is the seventh of 2022’s Christmas Countdown! Whiskies from previous years can be found here.

Every year, I look at the advent calendar offerings that pop up across the pond and think that it would be super cool to do something like that (it is actually the inspiration for my review spree in December). Turns out, I wasn’t the only one who wanted to do one so between /u/federalagents, /u/DangerousDoorknob, and I we put our own together! This is the sixth dram of the calendar. It was reviewed partially blind as in I know the whiskies in the calendar but not the order.

Nose: It is quite bright on the nose here. Lemon and something that reminds me of Simple Green is what comes through.

Palate: Definitely a bit of a fireball but you can still taste a lot even with the fire going on your tongue. There’s something that reminds me lemon curd and shortbread, perhaps lemon Linzer cookies? There’s a note of prickly pear as well, reminds me heavily of pear flavored Red Bull. Some Dole Whip pineapple notes wrap things up.

Finish: Medium to short in length. There’s a distinct grilled pineapple note for me, though the char/smoke note is very faint.

Guess: Scotland, Malt Whisky, Highland, Peated, 5-9 years of age, Ex-Bourbon Cask, 60-65% ABV, Croftengea/Loch Lomond.

Reveal: SMWS 122.43 “Conjuring Up All Sorts of Images” Croftengea 9 Year (2012).

Conclusion: Much like the Clynelish from a few days ago, if I didn’t have the list of possible drams I would have never guessed this to be a Croftengea. For being a Loch Lomond product and their more heavily peated one at that, I expected something a little more chaotic. However, I was convinced this was a younger whisky with minimal cask influence which led me to deduce this one. I don’t know how SMWS have done it but they’ve managed to find a Loch Lomond that isn’t chaos incarnate with the nose, palate, and finish all being fairly cohesive in flavor profile. Fruit, more prickly ones, was the dominant player here and quite nice overall. The combination of lemon Linzer cookies, prickly pear, and Dole Whip is a winner. If the nose were a little more pleasant or a bit more of the grilled pineapple note came through, I think I would have really enjoyed this one a lot more.

Final Score: 79.

Scotch Whisky Review #433, Highland Review #85, Whisky Network Review #588

Scoring Legend:

  • 96-100: The perfect dram, nectar of the gods.
  • 90-95: Near perfect, there is something truly special about this whisky and I will always try to keep a bottle of this in my collection if feasible.
  • 85-89: Very good to amazing, almost the complete product and I’m likely wanting a bottle or two.
  • 80-84: Quite good, pleasant overall though there is usually a few things that could be improved still.
  • 75-79: Good, enjoyable to drink but ultimately flawed.
  • 70-74: Alright, solid and wouldn’t go out of my way to get it.
  • 60-69: Meh, still drinkable.

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