Minnesota Malt wrote:
Never tried it... Would like to, but I don't see myself trying it anytime soon. There are a lot other SMs that I would like to try first. I'm a big fan of Islay, but I guess it is further down on my list only because I have heard more negatives than positives about Bowmore in general.
How would you guys describe its general characteristics? I have heard it is not as peaty as other Islays, but it has a sour touch to it...?
Yes, not as peaty as other Islays, though I had an Ob 1989 cask strength a couple of years back that seemed well peated - enough to give the Laga 12 a run for its money...but the first time I had Bowmore, in my whisky infancy, I was struck by a herbal flavour that reminded me of hheather and lavender...and another feature I have found in no other whisky is a sort of "mineral" stoney flavour, which when combined with the lavender makes for a unique experience. Some call it "perfumey", and some loathe it.
Jim Murray hated the "old" Darkest. Found it totally off balance. I loved it. The new Darkest and 18 yo. are much more toffeeish, perhaps more "novice friendly" and accessible...I really enjoyed the freebies I had of them at Whisky Live, but the old Darkest, the old 17YO, and a couple of IB's I've had, had those unique to Bowmore qualities that I love, though it'll never be a staple of mine like, say, Ardbeg.