Dear friends, followers, and supporters alike! Today I bring to you my review of the very first 8 year old whisky from the Swedish distillery Smögen! When working the Gothenburg whiskyfestival in april (for Edrington Sweden), Pär Caldenby, the Distillery Manager/Master Distiller of Smögen Distillery, came by the stand/booth and told me that if I wanted to review this whisky I just had to pop by his stand and sample it, yay! A fantastic offer indeed!
This whisky is a vatting of four (european; french) 1st-fill Sauternes barriques (225 litre each). The casks were filled in March 2011 with heavily peated new make, and bottled at a natural cask strength of 57,8% in April 2019. The casks gave 1628 bottles in total. 1272 of these bottles will be released at the swedish state monopoly this thursday (190509) through a so called web-launch. Please view the product by clicking here. (Please note that Systembolaget has messed up the ABV; it is not 60% but 57,8%). Ok folks, this is so exciting, let's do some analyzing!
The overall style on the nose is medium dark with a really nice depth and great balance between saltyness, peatyness and sweetness. I sense three layers. The bottom layer shows a medium heavy foundation where the sauternes plays the lead role in the form of ”the ususal suspects”; dried figs and dark raisins, but also overripe pear and interestingly enough (a whiff of) overripe banana and/or banana peel gone brown. These scents can generally be described as ”sweetness”. In the middle layer the saltyness and the peatyness intermingles with a close to seamless integration. The peatyness however holds the upper hand and has a very intriguing touch of vanilla drawing on milk chocolate infused fudge. The top layer is more basic than the other two, simply showcasing something citric. Here the ”alcohol”/ABV gives the perfect punch with just a slight touch of sourdough bread (”yeast”?).
”As usual” with whisky from Smögen Distillery it all starts of on saltyness. From there on however things are a little bit different than ususal; we move on into soft sweet liquorice and from there instantly on into something very milk chocolate-y, something very smooth and creamy, and medium dark vanilla-esque. The smoothness, creamyness and the vanilla goes on and on for a very long time (a token of great depth and maturity). When it does let go it transforms or evolves into a malty/chewy taste and it is actually not until this point in the flavourjourney that peatyness, farmhouse/barn and leather comes through. This last part of the taste is very chewy and tasty indeed. Mmm! The aftertaste is dry at first but when all the flavours come together with the creamyness, it makes water/saliva run in my mouth which creates a great sensation manifested in the desire to have another sip, and another after that…
Some reflections to sum up:
This whisky definitely has great depth both on the nose and on the taste! Things are a bit more deep than in previous releases which shows that the whisky coming from Smögen Distillery is starting to come of proper age. Also the general balance is great both on the nose and on the taste. The high alcohol/ABV is noticeable only on the nose (on the taste it didn’t even cross my mind). Well, a big congrats to Pär on the first 8yo, a job well done!
Finally, big thanks to Pär for the great opportunity to review this whisky before its release! For kind of weekly updates please make sure to follow my FB-page by clicking here, my instagram by clicking here, and my twitter-page by clicking here. Copyright © and All Rights Reserved on all tasting notes and text by SamuelWhisky and pictures and videos likewise belong to SamuelWhisky, unless stated. If you would like to use any such material that belongs to SamuelWhisky or associated with SamuelWhisky, please ask by sending me an email to samuelkarlssonorebro [at] gmail [dot] com and by stating the source.
|Pic belongs to/borrowed from Smögen Distillery|