Bowmore Distillery is one of few distilleries located at the isle of Islay, a region famous for heavy peated and smoky whiskies produced there.
Internet sources tell that Bowmore whiskies aren’t heaviest ones but well-balanced in taste and aroma. Peat is definitely there but smokiness is less featured.
I’m interesting in Islay whiskies very much, so one day I was very happy to buy a bottle of Bowmore Legend Single Malt Scotch Whisky. It was very cheap, and at first I was concerned about its quality. But all my fears gone when I opened the bottle and smelt aroma.
Bowmore Legend is defined as NAS (No Age Stated) but some sources insist that it’s aged for eight years.
When tasting it neat, I was ready for strong peat flavour but real taste was different.
Firstly aroma – leather, old tanned leather with touches of peat on background.
Bright palate: lemon zest, earthen flavour of dried peat and light smokiness. Very tasty but I can’t describe Bowmore Legend as full-bodied whisky because of its lack of depth in flavour.
Tart aftertaste becomes dry in the end and turns to long finish, hot and peaty, with notes of smoke, prunes and oak.
The next test was Rusty Nail, a cocktail I find perfect for scotch.
My Rusty Nail is:
45 ml scotch,
20 ml Drambuie,
two or three ice cubes
Build it all in rock glass and wait a minute till whisky dilutes a bit.
I do not like ice-cold Rusty Nail (and cold whisky at all) because low temperature ruins whisky flavour so usually I prefer a splash of clear water instead ice.
But ice is a strong cocktail tradition therefore this time I have made Rusty Nail with ice cubes.
I supposed that Bowmore Legend can cope with powerful and sweet Drambuie flavour. And I was right, the whisky and the liqueur work together very well and combine in delightful cocktail with sweet and peaty nose.
Smooth mouthfeel and full-bodied palate – all features I missed in Bowmore Legend neat are present in Rusty Nail. Sweet flavour with peaty and herbal notes comes to nice bitter aftertaste, hot, powerful and spicy. Honey, pepper, smoke, touch of oak and leather gave me a special relaxing feeling. And I enjoyed same hot finish with peaty, honey and slight vanilla notes.
Rusty Nail with single malt scotch whisky is not an usual thing at all. Some whiskies can’t compete with Drambuie, some whiskies put down the liqueur.
I think Bowmore Legend is perfect for Rusty Nail. Especially for Islay scotch lovers.