Inchmurrin 17, 2003 (SMWS 112.68)

The second Loch Lomond week of the year began with another official release (a recent 18 yo) and continued with an independent release (a Cooper’s Choice bottling of a peated Inchfad 15). Let’s close the week out now with another recent independent release. This one is from the Scotch Malt Whisky society and is a bourbon cask Inchmurrin released in 2020. I really liked the new official Inchmurrin 12, just as I did another SMWS release from a couple of years ago. And so have hopes for fruity goodness from this one as well; let’s see if they’re borne out.

Inchmurrin 17, 2003 (56.8%; SMWS 112.68; refill hogshead; from a bottle split)

Nose: A little spirity at first and then there’s a big wave of acid (lime, grapefruit). The fruit gets muskier with each sniff with some melon, pineapple and hints of overripe banana joining the citrus. The fruit melds together well and intensifies as it sits and there’s some cream floating over it now. The cream expands as it sits further and the citrus turns to citronella. Water just amplifies everything, especially the citronella.

Palate: Comes in as indicated by the nose, with the citrus in the lead and melon following. Rich, oily texture. Very approachable at full strength. With time the more intense tropical notes begin to emerge earlier and earlier. A faint metallic note emerges as well that mars the fruit just a bit. Okay, let’s see what water does. Ah yes. It pushes that metallic note away, pulls out the cream from the nose and more of the tropical fruit from the finish and mixes it all together perfectly.

Finish: Long. A big tropical explosion one beat after I swallow with lychee and mango and passionfruit in it. The metallic note hangs out into the finish too once it emerges on the palate. Water removes the metallic note from the finish as well and keeps the cream going.

Comments: Well, this was a lovely surprise. I suppose it shouldn’t have been a surprise: it’s no secret that Loch Lomond makes a fruity spirit and that Inchmurrin is the designated Loch Lomond fruity malt. But at first it seemed like it was going to be one of those “it’s fruity but…” whiskies that doesn’t quite have the depth or development you want but that wasn’t the case here. Both time and water were great for it. Wish I had a full bottle.

Rating: 90 points.



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