Submitted by Philip Storry on
It's been a busy time for the SMWS recently, with the launch of the Vaults Collection topping a few changes that have caused concern amongst members. I commented on this over at Malt Review, so will simply note that the Vaults Collection isn't part of the normal Outturn and therefore will be reviewed separately.
Regardless of the perception of the SMWS, there are some cracking whiskies on this list. We have score of 5 with the Bladnoch, which is a superb and succulent dram. Then there's a remarkable four (FOUR!) drams that scored 4.5 - the fruit-laden Miltonduff, the beautifully balanced Highland Park, the slightly waxy Glen Grant and the tropical fruit of the Glenrothes.
As if those high scores weren't enough, we then see four scoring 4! The deliciously sweet Glentauchers, the fruity and floral Glenburgie, and finally the the fruity Dailuaine and Linkwood.
It's not all moments of wonder and joy - I did find the Tullibardine and the Strathmill were both on the wrong side of spiciness for me.
Some housekeeping - the Bladnoch is the first bottle with the new black label style for bottles priced G and above. An interesting change, but I'm not really a packaging person so couldn't quite care! Also, the Laphroaig wasn't available due to labelling issues, and the Cragganmore is mail order only so didn't arrive in London. But it wouldn't be a true SMWS list without something being missing!