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Outturn Ready to party: Friday 15 November Issue 11, 2019

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GIFT

GIVIS FOR NG

BIG PARTY ANIMAL It’s BIG and it’s coming your way: celebrate in the spirit of the season with this mammoth new malt collection. From party starters to conversation sparkers, there’s a Society whisky for all occasions this season. CELEBRATE AT SMWS.COM.AU


CONTENTS REFLECTIONS ON 2019 Whisky is about people Matt Bailey.......................................

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Whisky moments Suzy Tawse.......................................

17

Cellarmaster’s Note Andrew Derbidge.............................

4

Where did it begin? Andre Tammes................................

24

Your State Managers Reflections from 2019.....................

6

3IF5TS+FOGR

OUR BOTTLINGS G IVIN G

JUICY, OAK & VANILLA

Cask No 12.26................................... 11 Cask No 123.35................................. 12

Cask No 1.210................................... 26 Cask No 85.55................................... 26 Cask No 39.177.................................. 26 Cask No G4.18.................................. 27

SPICY & DRY Cask No 70.33................................... 8

Malts of the Month Cask No 70.33 + 10.175................

8

Festive bundles Three bundles of joy.................... 16 Special releases Cask No 89.10 + 96.30................ 18 Rare Release Cask No 139.5.............................

SPICY & SWEET

20

Cask No 58.28................................... 12 Cask No 44.99................................... 15

Cask No 89.10............................... 18

Cask No 10.175.................................. 8 Cask No 52.28................................... 27

DEEP, RICH & DRIED FRUITS Cask No 107.16.................................. 15

LIGHTLY PEATED

Cask No 96.30.................................. 18

Cask No 135.12 ................................. 27

Cask No 139.5................................... 20

Cask No 93.102 ................................ 27

Cask No 35.235................................. 25

Cask No 66.133 ................................ 28

PEATED

OLD & DIGNIFIED

YOUNG & SPRITELY

OILY & COASTAL

Cask No 35.239................................. 15 Cask No 46.72................................... 26

Cask No 53.298................................. 28 Cask No 10.176.................................. 29

SWEET, FRUITY & MELLOW Cask No 95.29............................... 11 Cask No 5.70................................. 11 Cask No 112.49.............................. 11

SINGLE CASK SPIRITS

LIGHT & DELICATE Cask No 64.108................................. 15

EVE P33NTS

YOUR SOCIETY 7

The year that was 2019 Instagram wall........................

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The member experience Seven of our members celebrate their Society journey........................

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Events Book in now for Society events across the country................

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Your Partner Bars Visit one today.................................

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Festive Gifting All your gifting needs sorted...........

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25 casks for Christmas Our new advent calendar................

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Your year of experiences 2019 events in pictures....................

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30 Cask No R13.1................................... 30 Cask No A4.5.................................... 30 Cask No Blend 1...............................


TWEE

@sm

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WHISKY IS ABOUT PEOPLE A member recently said to me that they genuinely thought the Society couldn’t top what was an amazing 2018, but 2019 exceeded expectations yet again. They also confessed they say this every year, and every year it keeps getting better. I love all member feedback, but that one won it for me. At the pace I go, I don’t often find the time to really properly reflect on what we’ve just done, what we’ve just experienced, or how we’re constantly shaping the member experience, but this is my chance now. For those who experienced even just a portion of the Gathering in September, or the Founder’s Favourites of October, you’ll notice a certain theme of looking at our roots and showing some respect for the people that have shaped single malt whisky worldwide. Even reading through Pip’s book ‘The Founder’s Tale’ has some little stories and wild tales throughout that make you think “if that hadn’t happened, would we be as strong as we are today in the category?” I am of course talking ‘category’ here, not just SMWS. Pip is indeed one of the most influential characters in the earlier development of single malt Scotch whisky, but that path is also paved by many others from Scotland and indeed Australia. Where would the Australian malt whisky appreciation scene be today if not for the likes of Norman Case, Craig Daniels, John Rourke, Andre Tammes, and indeed our very own Andrew Derbidge! Altogether it’s about building what some already call the ‘whisky fabric’, the sense of shared community,

the true essence of a shared experience through unique single cask whiskies, whether that be at one of our events, or from the comfort of your own living room with one of our discovery packs. So where does that put us now? It’s fascinating for me over the last 5 years alone just to watch the knowledge level and enthusiasm of our members constantly grow and the whisky community be as active and friendly as it is. This Festive Outturn is all about celebrating the member experience, how and where you got into whisky, and what you love about it. Scattered throughout the pages this year are some member stories which came from me just asking them what their favourite single cask experience was this year, what they look for in a dram, and where they found their start with the world’s largest and unique whisky club, the SMWS. I hope you’ll join me this year in raising a glass, celebrating a spectacular 2019, and preparing to usher in a great 2020 ahead. We have so many incredible casks and experiences planned for the upcoming year, some of which I’ll keep under wraps for now, but the Whisky Champs are back for 2020, and I’d love to see each and every one of you there. Cheers,

Matt Bailey ~ SMWS National Ambassador

The international team as of 2019 standing on the stairs at the Vaults. L-R: David Ridley, Shigeo Fukuda, Takahiro Hashimoto, Kai Ivalo, Euan Campbell, Matt Bailey, Ben Diedrich, Neil Aitken, Mark Van Der Vijver, Helen Stewart, Tom Smith, Thomas Korsgaard, Richard Goslan.

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A NOTE FROM OUR CELLARMASTER When I was very young, my parents would always make a point of sitting down to watch the news on television when it came on at 6.00pm.  To a five year old whose experience with television was limited to Play School and Sesame Street, “the news” was a very strange, boring, and staid piece of viewing. 

“WHAT IS ‘THE NEWS’?” I ASKED ONE DAY. MY DAD REPLIED, “IT’S THE SAME STUFF HAPPENING EVERY DAY, JUST TO DIFFERENT PEOPLE.”

Each year as I reflect back on the whisky year that was, it occurs to me that my dad’s sage observation about the news is equally applicable to the whisky industry: The same stuff happens each year, it’s just the names that get adjusted.  New distilleries will open. Some distilleries will change ownership.  New releases will appear, and some old favourites will be discontinued and disappear.  Old brands will be resurrected; new independent bottlers and labels will be established.  Distillery managers will move on or retire; brand ambassadors will swap places.  There will be outrage as distilleries launch new NAS releases at high prices, and there will be a new record set at auction for the world’s most expensive whisky.  It’s so predictable, you could almost be forgiven for thinking it’s all boring. But the reason it isn’t boring is because the names do change.  The industry is wide enough and dynamic enough that there is interest, investment, and – to be honest – gossip about what’s happened, who did it, why they did it, and how it was done.  And each little move on the chess board of whisky – whether by a pawn or a queen – has a ripple that impacts the industry and the consumer in some way.  The fascinating thing, to me at least, is that some of these ripples don’t get felt for a long time. If the ripple has something to do with a distillery’s production, it could be 10-15 years before consumers experience

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I have taken great joy in seeing so many new people this year, both young and old, commence their whisky journey with the Society – either as new members, or as curious onlookers wanting to know more.

and taste that ripple. Similarly, the (Scotch) whisky we’re drinking today is the result of ripples that occurred, say, in the early and mid-2000’s.      For the majority of whisky consumers, of course, it’s all irrelevant and of little concern.  As long as we have a decent bottle of malt at home waiting for us after a long day, most folks don’t care about the machinations of the industry and how that bottle came to be.  I readily concede that I, personally, live and operate in a very small bubble of uberenthusiasts for whom such things are a talking point. We all have our hobbies.  Having said that, I have taken great joy in seeing so many new people this year, both young and old, commence their whisky journey with the Society – either as new members, or as curious onlookers wanting to know more.  Our Facebook Group, which is a public group open to anyone, has swelled in numbers this year, and there’s been a tonne of interest and interaction from folks from Sydney to Perth, Adelaide to Darwin, and everywhere in between.  Through our tasting events, our social media posts, and – more recently – Matt’s weekly live streams on Instagram, we’ve seen this year a tremendous level of interest from members, newcomers, and punters alike.

And I love that the Society is seen as an authority on the subject. It’s been a great year of tastings and events, capped off with a crescendo towards the end with the likes of our Vaults 1682 night and the Gathering evenings. We also made appearances at several whisky fairs and expos, and we continued our long history of hosting tastings and whisky appreciation evenings for private and corporate clients.   My favourite event of the year was the Vaults 1682 tasting, not just because of the wonderful and historical whiskies tasted on the night, nor because of the Society’s great history that we reflected on during the night, but simply because it demonstrated that most wonderful principle on which the Australian SMWS branch is founded: Conviviality. Thanks to all for a great year, and may all your drams be sweeter. Sláinte,

Andrew Derbidge ~ Director, Cellarmaster & NSW Manager 5


YOUR STATE MANAGERS

Our state managers are beacons of knowledge in a busy landscape of whisky. Here’s some reflections on what makes it all worthwhile for them.

SCOTT MANSFIELD Queensland State Manager

DREW MCKINNIE ACT State Manager

JENNY FORREST

Recently, inspired by an interview with Giles Martin, I listened to his remix of the Beatles Abbey Road 50 years after its initial release. Something so familiar just popped and fizzed in ways I’d never noticed before. What a revelation! So it was with new flights of Society casks that came our way in 2019. A symphony of flavours took us away as fine dining met single cask spirit during our dinners at the Brisbane Club. 51.14 Alluring Fruit and Spices played a sweet melody.  For many, a highlight was our ‘Challenge the Panel’ afternoon where members composed their own wonderfully evocative and vivid spins on tasting notes. Cask 29.253 had us Drifting and Dreaming. Each Society event brought new riffs, classic hooks and power beats. So here comes 2020, another year of flavour and fun and in the end that’s what we’re all about.

For many years the Canberra Region SMWS membership has lived up to its reputation as “a friendly mob”, well in touch with the lively whisky scene here. Our partnership with the Hippo Co whisky bar upstairs in Garema Place, Canberra City, has led to some wonderful sociable tastings with a few successful flavour experiments. I hear the latest Gathering tasting was a flavoursome hoot! (Thanks Brendan and Shane for covering my forced absence.) We have also enjoyed top nights at The Deck at Regatta Point overlooking the Parliamentary triangle. Yet changes are afoot with our venues (The Deck and The Green Herring) so we are exploring new options. Whatever happens, the friendships and camaraderie will be preserved.  Visitors to our fair city should check the SMWS calendar, or even just head upstairs to Hippo Co for a dram and a chat. Slainte mhath. And have one for me! Be good to the people who matter in your lives.

We’ve been thinking about what the SMWS means to us. I love the ability to buy such delicious, complex and diverse whiskies – I really enjoy nothing better than pouring a dram whenever the mood takes me. Alan loves the range of remarkable flavours and stories behind the bottlings. Alan and I have promised ourselves to tap more deeply into our whisky cellar and open some of our paper label bottles – if we savour one a month, the next year is taken care of! Easily! With summer fast approaching, our favourite spot is being on our roof deck, dram in hand, drinking in the Adelaide city views. We extend a warm welcome to you to join us in 2020 for our Adelaide events. We’d love to meet you. Adelaide members are living proof that the SMWS is a whisky club like no other where life and discoveries are better shared.

SA State Manager

THANK YOU

from all our State Managers for sharing the love of the single cask in 2019!

ANDREW DERBIDGE New South Wales

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OWEN SMYTHE Victoria

JASON DAVIES

Western Australia

FRED APOLLINI Wollongong


2019 YOUR YEAR OF EXPERIENCES

Whether from the comfort of your living room or at a whisky lunch event in town, this year was jam-packed full of unique experiences we all came together to enjoy and share in the world’s largest and simply unique whisky club.

CHEERS FROM THE SMWS AUSTRALIA TEAM!

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MALTS OF THE MONTH CASK NO. 70.33 Clear worts, long ferments, wooden washbacks and stumpy stills.

What does all this mean? It means you’re looking at a rich, spicy, heavy yet fruity spirit quality from a distillery that makes Scotch whisky the old fashioned way. Line up your festive pine cones and pop them in a percolator and sink your teeth into this lovely malt over the holidays.

A PERCOLATOR OF PINE CONES SPICY & DRY CASK NO. 70.33

$159.00

Reduced from $179.00

REGION

Highland

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon barrel

AGE

9 years

DATE DISTILLED

23 October 2008

OUTTURN

215 bottles

ABV

60.5%

AUS ALLOCATION

24 bottles

The dram displayed complex depth redolent of old cigar boxes and coffee grains. The strong presence of oak led us along a woodland path amidst dried mushrooms and pine cones on the forest floor. Sweet impressions of heather honey, pears and assorted biscuits mixed with tree bark whilst all spice rustled through the undergrowth. Chilli jam tickled the tongue as nutmeg and cloves enveloped dried apricots and marmalade. The soft fruitiness of raspberries in trifle fused with pineapple to bring a juicy array to the table that worked in harmony with an exceedingly dry finish that combined dried shisha tobacco with strong black tea.

CASK NO. 10.175 Pork might not be traditional, but it could be part of your cold meats on a hot day these holidays. Distillery 10 from the Oily & Coastal profile makes for a sumptuous and oily character from their light unpeated spirit. The kind of cask worth popping open on Christmas Day around friends and family before that slightly more traditional afternoon nap. Bliss.

REGION

Islay

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon hogshead

AGE

11 years

DATE DISTILLED

03 October 2007

OUTTURN

239 bottles

ABV

61.0%

AUS ALLOCATION

18 bottles

PORK SCRATCHING EAU DE VIE OILY & COASTAL CASK NO. 10.175

$175.00

Reduced from $199.00

We are by the sea! Salted peanuts scattered in a hayloft. Silage, green olives, umami paste, vinaigrette, preserved lemons, ash-rolled goat’s cheese, dried tarragon and wet beach pebbles. Reduction unveils flowering gorse bushes, dried seaweed, miso broth, soy sauce, lemongrass, pork scratchings, salted honey, mineral salts, fresh linen and sea greens. In the mouth it is almost putty like in texture. Lots of dry herbs, clay, plasticine, syrupy citrus oils, lemon wax, medicines, old rope, gentle tarriness, salted corn chips, lamp oil and oily rags. Water brings preserved white fruits, dried apple rings, more mixed salted nuts, briny olives, chopped parsley, frying bacon pieces, salty butter, hummus and lemon cough drops.

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TOSSING THE BOUQUET SWEET, FRUITY & MELLOW CASK NO. 95.29

$159.00

IN THE ABSENCE OF CONVENTION SWEET, FRUITY & MELLOW CASK NO. 5.70

IAL SPECISH FIN

$249.00

REGION

Speyside

REGION

Lowland

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon hogshead

CASK TYPE

1st fill Oloroso hogshead

AGE

11 years

AGE

18 years

DATE DISTILLED

31 October 2007

DATE DISTILLED

11 October 2000

OUTTURN

288 bottles

OUTTURN

232 bottles

ABV

57.9%

ABV

56.3%

AUS ALLOCATION 12 bottles

AUS ALLOCATION 24 bottles

Opens up with a spring in its step with bountiful aromas of sweet buttery popcorn, molten marshmallows, rhubarb & custard, gooseberry tart, lemon oils, lime possit, garden fruits glazed in golden syrup and youthful dessert wines. With a splash of water there’s milk bottle sweeties, soft herbal liqueur, red liquorice, toasted pine nuts, orange cocktail bitters, a gravelly earthiness and coal dust. The mouth is fruity and dense. Packed with date-studded muesli, orange oils, caraway, cider apples, farmyard bluster, waxed canvas, toasty cereals, lemon barley water and herbal toothpaste. Reduction reveals white stone fruits, pineapple jelly beans, spearmint gum, trodden daisies, hazelnut spread, coconut, hawthorn and sugar syrup.

The first sniff took us straight to aged riesling wine with a delightfully oily hue. On the second inspection we discovered pineau des charentes, and further to that armagnac. ‘Is this whisky?’ we thought as calvados now erupted from the glass. Then more familiar notes of roasted chestnuts and dark chocolate emerged alongside apples, sultanas and cinnamon stick. The palate carried a sticky thickness as dried figs joined Black Forest gateau. With water we wandered into aged cider and cherry liqueur with a warm slice of tarte tatin and a dollop of apple chutney. Then oily walnuts continued through to a finish that was heavy with dried orange and coconut. After spending 15 years in an ex-bourbon hogshead this was transferred to a 1st fill oloroso hogshead for the remainder of its maturation.

BLACKBERRIES, BUBBLE-GUM, AND BOUGAINVILLEA

THE FRUIT PICKER’S TIPPLE

SWEET, FRUITY & MELLOW CASK NO. 112.49

$255.00

SPICY & SWEET CASK NO. 12.26

$160.00

AN SELEDREW’S CTIO N

REGION

Highland

REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

2nd fill ex-bourbon barrel

CASK TYPE

1st fill ex-bourbon barrel

AGE

18 years

AGE

9 years

DATE DISTILLED

25 July 2000

DATE DISTILLED

29 September 2009

OUTTURN

210 bottles

OUTTURN

195 bottles

ABV

55.4%

ABV

59.7%

AUS ALLOCATION 18 bottles Eavesdropping on the panel you would have heard words like ‘fascinating’, ‘amazing’, ‘compelling’, and ‘heavenly’ – enough said? No? OK – on the nose we got vanilla, concentrated coconut, perfumed oak, tropical island cocktails, lemongrass, lavender and mango. The palate discovered grapefruit, passion-fruit, melon and nectarines, Flumps, blue raspberry bonbons, white chocolate gateau and very old bourbon. The reduced nose continued to delight us, with Lilt, blackberries, bubble-gum and bougainvillea. The taste was now an intriguing mix of bananas flambéed with rum, fudge, liquorice, dandelion and burdock and dried papaya. A very unusual but powerfully rewarding dram.

AUS ALLOCATION 24 bottles Crates of apples were stacked beside hessian sacks filled with sweet potatoes whilst strawberries and raspberries were brought in fresh from the field. The perfumed bouquet of dried heather intermingled with seasoned wood whilst the tart tingle of marmalade and preserved lemons delivered a refreshing zing. The palate carried a rich and spicy manner that suggested pickled ginger before softening with a glass of lunchtime mead to black cherries and caramel wafers. A hint of vanilla pods introduced banana fritters and an assortment of tropical fruit before soft plums faded into the dry oaky finish.

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A SPLASH OF THE TROPICS

USQUEBAE AN’ BLANKETS WARM

SPICY & SWEET

SPICY & DRY

CASK NO. 123.35

$180.00

CASK NO. 58.28

$179.00

REGION

Highland

REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

1st fill ex-bourbon barrel

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon barrel

AGE

10 years

AGE

13 years

DATE DISTILLED

29 August 2008

DATE DISTILLED

21 April 2005

OUTTURN

185 bottles

OUTTURN

225 bottles

ABV

61.9%

ABV

59.7%

AUS ALLOCATION 12 bottles We imagined sitting on a tropical beach with a fruit basket of pineapples and mangos being served or later on in the day a glass of Hurricane Party punch (orange, pineapple, lime and grenadine juice with plenty of rum). On the palate neat it was more of a ‘Zombie’ which had plenty of Szechuan pepper thrown into the mix. After dilution we were however back enjoying plenty of sweet fruity aromas which now turned into oranges, cherries and apples. To taste, very different compared to neat, bitter sweet Seville orange marmalade, ginger biscuits and a yoghurt pomegranate dessert with honey.

AUS ALLOCATION 30 bottles If you sniff too deeply, the dry, spirity nature is like a frozen thistle up the nose, but treated with caution it gives pears and toffee apples, gingerbread, juniper bushes and gin; a warm blanket of laundry and blotting paper. With water it settles nicely – pot pourri, snuff, ginger snaps, Blackpool rock and raisins. The initial neat palate is sweet and tart – apple strudel, lemon peel, fresh fruits; with pepper, chilli and cinnamon heat on the finish. The reduced palate is even quite civilised – and tasty; jelly beans, spearmint Mentos and chalky lavender sweets – just a hint of cheek-tingling wasabi at the end.

ICONS OF WHISKY SMWS AWARD WINNERS! The Australian branch of the SMWS has taken out a trifecta of awards at the prestigious Icons of Whisky Awards for 2020, as hosted by Whisky Magazine. Our very own ambassador, Matt Bailey, has taken out Scotch Whisky Ambassador of the Year, our Cellarmaster has won Whisky Communicator of the Year for Whisky & Wisdom, while Partner Bar Whisky & Alement won Bar of the Year! A triple treat to end the year on a very high note. This kind of recognition from the industry is truly humbling and we’re all very excited to share this news with our members!

Congratulations to Matt, Andrew and Whisky & Alement! 12


CELEBRATING THE MEMBER EXPERIENCE We hear from a selection of our members about their favourite single cask experience this year, what they look for in a dram, and where they found their start with the world’s largest and most unique whisky club...

SCOTT BRICKHILL

Member since 2018

WHISKY HAS ALWAYS BEEN ON THE SHELF IN OUR FAMILY HOME. My grandfather would sit on the front steps of his house at the end of the day and enjoy 100 Pipers whilst watching the world go past. For him, simple pleasures were about enjoying a whisky with family and friends. And that’s what the Society is all about for me. Living in North Queensland makes it pretty difficult to get to Society events, but this year I joined in on two virtual tastings. This was a great way for the far-flung members to get together and talk all things whisky and learn a thing or two about what we were sampling. The tasting in June was from The Vaults, and it was so easy and enjoyable that I then linked into the September session, ‘The Gathering’, hosted by Matt and Andrew. All of the whiskies were fantastic, but it was the coming together, the questions, answers and member discussions that made it really fun.

My Society whisky journey took me this year to finally visit ‘Whisky and Alement’ in Melbourne. Walking in and seeing the green bottles standing proudly on the bar had me wanting to pull up a stool and start from left to right. The staff were so welcoming and knowledgeable that two nights later I returned and ventured upstairs to the Melbourne Whisky Room. Well my jaw just hit the floor. My wife and I spent the next few hours window-side sharing a cheese board whilst I geeked out over the massive SMWS selection on hand.

No flavour profile is a favourite, but Deep, Rich & Dried Fruits, thanks to 68.18 Triple berry lamington cake could be close. I may also have an affinity to the deep red stripe due to a lightbulb release, 35.190 Hot apple and cinnamon sponge. 52.23 Ice cream and gorse by the sea. This is quite easily my whisky of the year. It is so good I want all my friends to try it, but at the same time I want to selfishly horde what’s remaining for myself. Ahhh the double-edged sword of the single cask.”

Oh, a whisky highlight?

73.69 Dark side eclipsed by sweet joys. This year the Society has helped educate me more about whisky and its nuances. Each month I scour the pages of the Outturn, looking for a distillery that has been taken in a different direction, something that offers up a truly a unique expression.

Scott Brickhill 13


ALEX MOORES

Member since 2015

JUST WHEN I THOUGHT IN 2018 THAT THE SOCIETY COULDN’T GET ANY BETTER, ALONG CAME 2019.

2019 - AN INNOVATION ODYSSEY What a fantastic year it has been. There is always a bit of a lull over the new year period, as people return from holidays and the weather encourages all to be outside rather than at the tasting table. I have never really agreed with the concept of “whisky weather” as on the cold and rainy days I reach for an Old & Dignified or a Deep, Rich & Dried Fruits whereas in the summer months it’s a Young and Spritely or a Juicy, Oak and Vanilla. For that matter, when I’m camping and fishing in any season it’s an Oily & Coastal or Peated every time. But once everyone gets back into full swing then the Society starts to flourish. Full disclosure, I live in Melbourne, so the focus of my attention was there despite several other interstate and international adventures. The year started, quite appropriately, with a very refreshing tasting in the form of Society Highballs at the Melbourne Whisky Room. This was a particularly impressive and innovative event from SMWS National Ambassador, Matt Bailey, because most Society members are probably averse to mixing their whisky. We had some delicious drams, with the chance to try both in and out of soda, and both were wonderful ways to experience Society high-ABV liquid. It wasn’t long before the much anticipated SMWS Single Cask Cruise sailed into view, and on a beautiful

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shining day on the Yarra river, a small but dedicated group of Society fans drifted and drammed under the capable eye of skipper Owen Smythe, our State Manager. The support was immense, and I have no doubt that this type of event will be run again in the future. From the ocean to the sky, the next month I journeyed to Scotland to spend some time at the spiritual home of the Society, at the Vaults in Leith, Edinburgh. All members should be encouraged to do a trip to the UK at some point, even if they only make it as far as the wonderful Greville Street HQ in London. However, I had my sights set on the Spirit of Speyside Whisky Festival, and headed on my journey north to participate in many wonderful events run by the Society, including a May the Fourth Star Wars event at Distillery 35, a blind tasting challenge run by Charlie McLean and Dave Broom, and a boilermaker beer and whisky pairing run by Hans Offringa. Totally revitalising my passion for the Society, it was time to travel home all too soon. This year was also the year of the virtual tasting, and no sooner was I back in Australia than I was tuning in at 4:00 am to see the ubiquitous Global Brand Ambassador, John McCheyne, and our very own Matt Bailey host the live tasting from the Campbeltown Malts Festival.

This also heralded the launch of some pretty amazing festival bottlings with the best artwork I have ever seen on Society casks (which is as subjective as the whisky palate, I’m sure). This was not the last virtual tasting of the year either, and long may they continue along with the @smws_aus daily live stream. It was also the year of the Society’s podcast, “Whisky Talk”, curated by Richard Goslan and a must-listen for all members. Finally, the Society went one step further into new territory with unprecedented The Gathering global tastings, bringing together members from every branch of the SMWS and united them under one banner (not just the banner of Distillery 33). It also sparked the re-involvement of Pip Hills with the Society following the release of his new book about the founding of the SMWS called, very aptly but with no points for originality, The Founder’s Tale. I went to both Melbourne and Sydney and was thrilled to see different line-ups, different food, different presentation and of course different wonderful members. This year, I believed the Society turned a corner into new and exciting innovations in the way that whisky is delivered to members and to the public. I cannot wait for what 2020 has in store for all of us.” Alex Moores


AS FEATURED IN THE GATHERING DISCOVERY PACK

Liked what you tasted in the Gathering pack? Nab a full bottle here, but get in quick as stocks are very limited!

A REAL CRACKER SPICY & DRY CASK NO. 44.99

$195.00

REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon barrel

AGE

14 years

DATE DISTILLED

09 June 2004

OUTTURN

188 bottles

The initial scent of salted caramel ice cream served over 55.9% ABV warm chocolate brownies got us all very excited. When we 12 bottles AUS ALLOCATION nosed for a second time we additionally got mixed nuts (pistachio, almond, hazelnut) Turkish Delight and spiced baked apples. On the palate neat, sweet cinnamon buns but at the same time dry and crisp Melba toast as well as salty Ritz crackers. Water released the aroma of opening a jar of sweet pickles and slicing Black Forest ham whilst the flavours were wonderfully interwoven between salty and savoury with a great texture like olive oil crackers with sea salt and herbs.

TRULY A FAIRY TALE DEEP, RICH & DRIED FRUITS CASK NO. 107.16

$175.00

REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

2nd fill toasted sherry butt

AGE

7 years

DATE DISTILLED

04 April 2011

OUTTURN

524 bottles

67.0% ABV An impressive nose neat - even more so when taking the age into consideration. Complex, sweet and spicy, nutmeg, 12 bottles AUS ALLOCATION fruitcake with rum soaked raisins, strawberry jam filled donuts, caramel and a hint of tree bark. Deep, dark and broody on the palate like brown sugar meringues with a hazelnut butterscotch sauce. With a drop of water plenty of charred/burnt oak reminiscent of a Walpurgis Night bonfire and we skipped around the fire and sung: “the queen will never win the game, for Rumpelstiltskin is my name”! After five years in an ex-bourbon hogshead this whisky was transferred into a 2nd fill toasted oak butt.

SWEET SEDUCTION OLD & DIGNIFIED CASK NO. 35.239

$330.00

M SEL ATT’S ECT ION

REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

1st fill ex-bourbon barrel

AGE

23 years

DATE DISTILLED

27 October 1995

OUTTURN

202 bottles

52.9% ABV This sample had a story to tell but it whispered rather than yelled. It was complex and multi-layered but at the 12 bottles AUS ALLOCATION same time graceful, elegant and sophisticated. We fell in love straight away but give it time and you will enter a relationship. A ‘melt-in-the-mouth’ sensation like truffles with a dark chocolate shell and filled with a honey-saffron white ganache. Be extra careful when adding water, an elusive seductive blend of cedar wood, patchouli oil and warm vanilla greeted us and on the palate, a velvety sweet texture with the smoothness of a coconut brandy – gracefully aged!

SOMETHING FOR THE WEEKEND... LIGHT & DELICATE CASK NO. 64.108

$160.00

REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon barrel

AGE

10 years

DATE DISTILLED

05 March 2008

OUTTURN

218 bottles

ABV

61.0%

6 bottles AUS ALLOCATION A surprisingly deft aroma of lychee, rosewater, cinnamon bark and freshly bailed hay greeted the Panel at first nosing. Lots of raw green malt, brown toast and subtle camphory notes with touches of airfix glue, ripe banana and a scatter of lemon drops. With water we added heather, gooseberry, sunflower oil, new leather handbag and a ladle of chicken and barley soup. A few crushed oatcakes found their way in there as well. The palate was immediately strewn with nettles, crushed flowers, herbal liqueur and an almost effervescent red apple juice note. With reduction it was pure barley water mixed with mulled cider, green apples, more lemon drops and a single chocolate lime.

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BUNDLES HOLIDAY CHEER

$469.00 8 available

The family is around, friends are near, time to impress with some single casks that you’re happy to share around. These holiday cheer bottlings are a great way to introduce people to the magic of single cask whisky with very diverse offerings.

URBANE AND LOVABLE SPICY & SWEET CASK NO.

USQUEBAE AN’ BLANKETS SPICY & DRY

12.24

CASK NO.

58.28

A PIECE OF PARADISE

SAV $50 E

JUICY OAK & VANILLA CASK NO.

PEAT WAVE

112.48

$579.00

10 available

Three casks, three distilleries, three diverse peated offerings from the panel to make a very smoky festive season! Restock your smoky selection with the peat wave!

BURNT HEATHER AND HONEY

TEA-SMOKED SALMON

LIGHTLY PEATED

PEATED

CASK NO.

CASK NO.

66.136

SAV $44 E

10.176

GAUZE AND EFFECT PEATED CASK NO.

53.275

SURF TRIO

$569.00

10 available

Charred casks, fruity Irish, remarkable complexity. Surfs up! Proper holiday dramming with three diverse and delightful casks to share around for those who love a tipple.

THE FRUIT PICKER’S TIPPLE SPICY & SWEET CASK NO.

12.26

ALLURING FRUITS AND SPICES JUICY OAK & VANILLA CASK NO. 16

SAV $49 E

51.14

MONKBERRY MOON DELIGHT DEEP RICH & DRIED FRUITS CASK NO. 68.28


WHISKY MOMENTS Already on the home stretch to the festive season, it feels like 2019 has been a momentous year for the club. So many amazing new whisky experiences, new distillery offerings, old distillery offerings, incredible spirits and an ever-widening community of whisky lovers.

Looking back on the year, it struck me just how many varied and special moments have called for a Society bottling or a gift membership surprise. A 40th birthday (do we have a 40 year old whisky?), a 21st birthday (do we have a bottling distilled on the actual birth date?), a daughter’s wedding (a special malt for the quaich to be shared by the bride and groom), a birth (wetting the baby’s head is de rigeur), a 60th birthday with a lifetime of friends gathering to share some Society drams... and, well, let’s be honest – just about any occasion will do. Let’s not forget the medicinal qualities of the water of life…as one Member chose to describe his whisky selections when recovering from a recent operation. I received a phonecall from his daughter who was by his bedside not long after the surgery…and it was a First Friday of the month, so better not miss out! One lucky soul from Australia was recently given a membership to the Society (pre-arranged in Sydney) during a trip to Scotland…in fact whilst on the stairs

up to The Vaults in Edinburgh, in honour of an auspicious birthday. A non-member going up the stairs, but by the top, his wife had presented him with his new membership card – he was now a proud Society Member playing host in the Members Rooms with his wife and two friends. Now that’s clever gifting. So however you celebrate this festive season and the end of year, thank you for being part of this club and this whisky community. Let’s raise a glass to the year that’s almost gone – and to a whole new year of shared discoveries ahead!

Suzy Tawse ~ Director 17


SPECIAL RELEASES CASK NO. 89.10 The festive season deserves some sherry casks, so why not kick off with the

welcome return of distillery 89 to the SMWS! A relatively young distillery, having been built in 1965, and not commonly known for its single malts, so seeing a sherried, single cask, single malt is almost hens teeth! Lovely notes of white port, marzipan, ripe pears and cider brandy.

GLOVE BOX SONATA IN B MINOR YOUNG & SPRITELY CASK NO. 89.10

$165.00

REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

Refill sherry butt

AGE

7 years

DATE DISTILLED

17 November 2011

OUTTURN

556 bottles

ABV

64.1%

AUS ALLOCATION

30 bottles

An elegant and supple aroma of white port, stone fruits, pear skins, orange travel sweets, candy floss and a warm barley steep. There’s also grape must, lychee, horse box, white chocolate dipped marzipan, almond puree and sultanas soaked in mead. With dilution the aroma opens onto cough syrup, hand lotion, sun cream, olive oil cake, malt bins, lemon peel, sunflower seeds, brown bread and warm grist. The palate begins with tinned peaches, ripe pears, green apple, sweet wort, aged grappa, cider brandy, raisins stewed in young Calvados, chopped chives and clover. Water reveals cocoa nibs, shea butter, putty, sweet wines, waxed canvas, cooking oils, flints, tart gooseberry and graphite oil.

CASK NO. 96.30 After a big day of wielding his hammer, even Thor needs a bit of down time to get his slippers on. Distillery 96 is renowned for its sherried malts, and this is no exception. A proper festive pour, expect notes of leather shoes, Madeira cake, Scottish tablet and a glass of mead. One to accompany the fruit cake perhaps?

REGION

Highland

CASK TYPE

1st fill Pedro Ximenez hogshead

AGE

10 years

DATE DISTILLED

30 October 2008

OUTTURN

265 bottles

ABV

59.5%

AUS ALLOCATION

18 bottles

THOR’S SLIPPERS DEEP, RICH & DRIED FRUITS CASK NO. 96.30

$199.00

IAL SPECISH FIN

A big and bold dram that opens straight away on new leather shoes, heather honey and coal tar soap. Notes of mint julep, turmeric, gooseberry jelly, kiwi, air freshener, pine resin and newly laundered linens. Quite invigorating! Water sweetened things with notes of bramble wine, buttermints, tablet and mead. Also madeira cake and coconut creme brulee. The palate opens with lemon cheesecake, rhubarb crumble, digestive biscuit and aniseed balls. Then liquorice, red currants and herbal toothpaste. Water brings out notes of scones with strawberry jam and whipped cream, black pepper and a scatter of dried herbs. Previously in a bourbon hogshead for 7 years before transfer to a 1st fill PX sherry hogshead.

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19


RARE RELEASE It’s confirmed: Aussie members can’t get enough of distillery 139, and we’re super excited to announce that we have another rather rare offering for this year’s Festive Outturn from this magical mega distillery. On the 11th of March 2006 at precisely 3:30pm, the first spirit was produced at distillery 139. This is a young world whisky distillery that has properly placed itself on the map as a serious contender in malt whisky globally, and in that short time, already holds the crown as one of the ten largest malt whisky distilleries on earth. Thanks to the efforts of whisky legends Dr Jim Swan and Dr Ian Chang, the spirit quality and cask management is second to none, and thanks to our whisky team in the UK led by Kai Ivalo and Euan Campbell, we’re super excited to be able to offer up another delicious and rare treat from this iconic Taiwanese distillery. Cask 139.5 Midnight espresso is a premium single cask, panel-approved, cask strength whisky from Taiwan. Fully matured in a 1st fill Port barrique, this is a potent and muscular whisky, a late-night dram, a rich and unctuous pour. You can read more about this remarkable distillery, its history, and how bottling these was a triumph for the SMWS as the first ever independent bottlings of their spirit on our website under ‘Whiskywise’.

MIDNIGHT ESPRESSO DEEP, RICH & DRIED FRUITS CASK NO. 139.5

$599.00

REGION

Taiwan

CASK TYPE

1st fill port barrique

AGE

NAS

DATE DISTILLED

NAS

OUTTURN

181 bottles

ABV

57.8%

AUS ALLOCATION 30 bottles

CIAL E E P S LEAS RE

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A potent and muscular aroma. One filled with dark caramel, peppery beef jerky, incense, seared steak and leaf mulch. Beyond that there’s damp pipe tobacco, expensive cigar boxes, baked raisins and grape botrytis. Immensely concentrated and satisfying. A splash of water reveals star anise, fennel seeds toasting in a pan, treacle pudding, herbal tinctures and tannic black teas. The palate is skewered by lean and pointed sweetness. Around which gravitates sauteed wild mushrooms, game meats, aged pinot noir, beef boullion, autumnal leafiness and sultana-studded gingerbread. With water there’s a leathery mutton note along with grippy tannin, freshly shaved pencils, egg custard, old Armagnac and ash-rolled goats cheese. Some blood orange marmalade and old boal madeira in the finish.


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I FONDLY RECALL MY FIRST SMWS EXPERIENCE.

ALEX ESPINOSA

Member since 2010

MY EXPERIENCE HIGHLIGHT THIS YEAR WAS DEFINITELY THE VAULTS 1682 DINNER! Not only were there some incredible spirits on offer, but hearing more about the history of the Society, The Vaults building/site itself as well as the founding members of the Society was fascinating. What I love about whisky is essentially everything, but if I had to single something out, it would be the diversity. Across categories you obviously have an endless variety of malts and grains to play with before you then get into yeast selection, distillation methodology, cask types, maturation processes and breakdown ABV, not to mention how you actually undertake each of the production steps in between. I love seeing and tasting the variety of whiskies that are produced globally from old and new producers alike.   My favourite flavour profile is a super SUPER tough one as I like to drink around, but I am quite partial to something briny, slightly medicinal with a little peat (or other smoke) - that said, usually, but not always, I’m looking for balance. What I look for in an Outturn is just something interesting. The great thing about SMWS is that the prerequisite is quality, so you don’t have to worry about going for something more unusual because you know it has been assessed and selected on its merits.

WILL EDWARDS

Member since 2016

There wasn’t one single cask that got me into the Society, but two that immediately come to mind (excluding those on offer at The Vaults tasting) are 127.44 Cantina mexicana and what I believe was R6.1 Spice at the races.” Will Edwards

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It was way back in 2010 and I, along with some work colleagues, attended our first SMWS tasting (held in the Dinosaur Room of the Australian National Museum) and to quote The Four Seasons, “Oh what a night!”. It was a cold winter’s evening and I was about to embark on my first cask strength whisky, and what an experience it was. Hosted by the Cellarmaster, Mr Andrew Derbidge, and with a crowd full of first time attendees, we experienced single malt whisky; most of us for the first time. That one evening changed my life in so many ways. I can still, all these years later, recall some of the names of the single cask bottlings on the night. The 33.81 Vanilla Slice in a Medicine Chest, the 73.38 Adult Ice Cream Soda and

my first ever Society bottle purchase,

29.88 What a magnificent and

handsome nose. However, that was then; what about now? With so many events on the whisky calendar, the Society is always on the top of my list. And thinking back on this year, here are my highlights so far: The return of our Cellarmaster, Andrew, hosting a classic old school whisky masterclass was one of the best for so many reasons. Other exceptional evenings included the Burns Night Dinner, the delicious single cask dessert pairing held at Lotus, and the outstanding single cask rum gathering held at Brix Distillery. I really enjoy the Society and sharing and experiencing the plethora of events and tastings with other members, my invited guests, members of my

family, and of course, my whisky friends. With this in mind and for something different, a couple of friends, Andrew and Adrian (whom I met through the Society) and I got together and hatched a plan to purchase every SMWS Malt of the Month released for 2019. And I’m happy to report that so far we have enjoyed several evenings with great company, great food, great single malt Scotch whisky, and had a great time. I wish all members all the best for the festivities of the season; I hope to see you all in 2020 and beyond. And remember – membership has its rewards!” Alex Espinosa

2019 SAW ME REJOIN THE SMWS AFTER A COUPLE OF YEARS OUT IN THE WILDERNESS. It all started when I received a membership as a Christmas present a few years ago!  It’s impossible to pick a favourite flavour profile, it’s truly mood-dependent, but I can say that the 4.192 A pine forest after rain back when I joined was a revelation for me, and it turned me towards Highland Park, but also that constellation of flavours that is a perfect balance of bright, light, subtle and still complex... and it was a hot December evening after all. Perfect drop.

GIORGIA DE BIASI rejoined in 2019

Other times the lusciously gorgeous 35.228 Cigar juice hit the mark at the SMWS stage at the 2019 Oak Barrel Whisky Fair. In fact it’s fair to say that for the four SMWS events I have visited this year, each were completely different! Not just the lively Whisky Fair stage, but the intimate and fun group at the cute Shirt Bar for the Old Fashioned pre-release tasting - busy Boilermakers at Wayward Brewing (I also learnt more about beer... everyone wins) - Andrew’s Old School night at the RAC, where I met and fell a little bit in love with Distillery 39 (swoon). Not only whiskies, either - I made new friends at these events too. Which just goes to show, only great people drink with SMWS right?” Giorgia de Biasi 23


AUSTRALIA WHERE DID IT ALL BEGIN? Hazy memories of the Society’s founding – solely to do with the passage of time – not the imbibement of untold drams!

S

trewth – that feels like a long time ago..! So long that I struggle to remember my first contact with the Society. I know that it preceded the 1983 widening of the initial inner circle which our founder, Pip Hills, had gathered to appreciate the early casks he had brought from the Highlands to Edinburgh in his Lagonda. This circle was very small indeed compared to today’s Society membership and the amount of whisky circulating was comparably small. However, at some stage, I was fortunate enough to dine with a member of the group who shared a post prandial Glenfarclas (the first distillery bottled by the Society). That dram remains my malt epiphany – although I had lived most of my adult life in Edinburgh, and therefore experienced a wide range of malts, this lifted my realisation to a higher realm and laid out what was to become a long-term educational agenda – one which I now realise will never be complete (oh joy..!!) The first employee of the Society was another friend, Anne Dana, whose responsibilities were carried out in an impossibly small office in the newly acquired Vaults building in Leith, which had just been acquired as the headquarters for the formally launched Society as it opened its foundational private membership to all comers in 1983. Anne did it all – administering membership, organising bottle sales, arranging tastings and promoting the young Society in every conceivable way. By this time, having tasted several Society whiskies, I was a ready convert to paid-up membership and duly became the 126th member (the earlier numbers were allocated to those who had been members of the very early ‘inner circle’). So… a big jump forward, spanning so many years of immensely enjoyable and convivial times, both at The Vaults (some of those Burns Suppers live forever

24

in my riotous memories file!) and at home over numerous bottles of the best whiskies on the planet – to 1995 when I was asked to join the Board of the Society. These were troubled times because the business was confronting the classic problems associated with the rapid development of a truly wonderful idea, underpinned by great enthusiasm and subject knowledge but insufficient business acumen. By the time I resigned in late 1997, in order to relocate to Sydney, things had started to stabilise. Some years later, in 2004, the Society was acquired by Glenmorangie PLC which continued its operation until 2015 when the Society returned to private ownership. Having arrived in Sydney in early 1998, I remained very preoccupied with my daytime job, establishing the Australian end of an architectural lighting consultancy group that I had formed in the UK in 1984. However, the Society – having run a successful but ultimately dead-end tour to the Australian capital cities in 1996 – made the wise decision to try again, and determined that Aussies did not deserve to be deprived of access to what were, and remain, some of the best malt whiskies to have ever been produced. In 2002, the then managing director, Richard Gordon, introduced me to a long-standing UK member, John Rourke, who was returning to his native Australia and wanted to keep the flame burning. As they say – the rest is history. Sláinte,

André Tammes ~ Membership Director


THE VAULTS COLLECTION Welcome The Vaults Collection release for 2019:

CASK 35.235 FRANKLY EXQUISITE The Vaults Collection at the Society is exclusively reserved for our casks of the highest distinction. Casks that have significant age and/or history, that score so highly on the panel they deserve a bit of extra presentation and statement. Cask 35.235 is no exception to that rule, with some of the highest scoring from the panel we’ve seen all year. A truly exquisite cask from a distillery that needs no introduction at the SMWS, but is probably best known for their sheer diversity of flavour and depth of character to their spirit and innovation in cask maturation. Often a rich, nutty, and fruity spirit character, that very character isn’t lost after 31 years in oak, but is instead enhanced and balanced into the exquisite character that sits with this release. Pour a glass, sit back, remark on what you were doing on the 18th September 1987, and sink into notes of blood orange, molasses, rich sherry, thick-cut marmalade, old perfume and tobacco.

FRANKLY EXQUISITE DEEP, RICH & DRIED FRUITS CASK NO. 35.235

$699.00 REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

1st fill Oloroso hogshead

AGE

31 years

DATE DISTILLED

18 September 1987

OUTTURN

200 bottles

ABV

48.7%

LTS ION U A V ECT L COL 2019

AUS ALLOCATION 12 bottles The nose has an intriguing array of fruits – stewed rhubarb, perfumed pear, purple plums, pomegranate molasses, ripe fig, blood orange and Campari, with later hints of sherbet, sherry vinegar and curry spice. The neat palate has intense fruit and sherry flavours – rhubarb rock, thick-cut marmalade, Charentais melon, pineapple and marzipan; deeply satisfying and easy-drinking, with a mouth-tingling finish of chocolate Brazils, ginger, perfume and tobacco. The reduced nose – fruit compote, fruit cake, plum tarts, toffee apples and Armagnac. The reduced palate is rich, mouth-drawing and frankly exquisite – sherry trifle, kumquat, purple fruit pastilles, dried cranberries, blackcurrant jam and bitter chocolate. After 28 years of maturation on an ex-bourbon hogshead we transferred this whisky to an Oloroso hogshead for the remainder of its maturation.

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JUNGLE SLIPPERS

KEPT IN THE DARK

OLD & DIGNIFIED CASK NO. 46.72

$399.00

E’S ANDRCTION SELE

JUICY, OAK & VANILLA CASK NO. 1.210

$170.00

REGION

Speyside

REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon hogshead

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon hogshead

AGE

25 years

AGE

7 years

DATE DISTILLED

16 November 1992

DATE DISTILLED

08 June 2011

OUTTURN

275 bottles

OUTTURN

230 bottles

ABV

53.8%

ABV

64.4%

AUS ALLOCATION 18 bottles

AUS ALLOCATION 30 bottles

Whilst donning the most comfortable slippers we relaxed into a tropical realm of passion fruit, guava and lychee. Marzipan became sandwiched in a pineapple sponge cake whilst sliced melon and fruit compote embraced a fun-loving bubble gum character. Fresh notes of cut grass and sweet pea pods entwined around new oak with nutmeg spice a suggestion of vanilla. Flavours deepened to spicy marmalade and fruity rum punch with kiwis and ripe plums. Sultana scones arrived with a scoop of cherry and vanilla ice cream before the finish delivered banana fritters and fresh wood.

In the corner of a dark and damp dunnage warehouse a single beam of light danced over the cracked putty of a broken window and illuminated a pile of charred wood and wine corks. The air merged aromas of dried orange skin and grapefruit oil with the heavy spices of cloves, nutmeg and cinnamon. Red fruits waited in the shadows alongside walnuts and Brazil nuts while hot cross buns joined sweet crumbly biscuits. Water washed away thick layers of dust to uncover old leather and tobacco while a blanket of incense smoke brought turmeric and green tea. Damp leaves were scattered on the floor, however through the darkness came dried mango, apple tarts and melon sweets with butterscotch and cocoa nibs that lasted into a finish bound by cream soda.

FRESH AND SMOOTH

CASUAL SPONGE CAKE

JUICY, OAK & VANILLA CASK NO. 85.55

$170.00

JUICY, OAK & VANILLA CASK NO. 39.177

$170.00

REGION

Speyside

REGION

Speyside

CASK TYPE

1st fill ex-bourbon barrel

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon hogshead

AGE

10 years

AGE

10 years

DATE DISTILLED

18 November 2008

DATE DISTILLED

05 June 2008

OUTTURN

207 bottles

OUTTURN

278 bottles

ABV

61.0%

ABV

63.1%

AUS ALLOCATION 12 bottles An all-encompassing nose found us all fully engaged from the word go – lime tree blossom, chamomile oil, primroses, sweet coconut and vanilla popcorn and the fresh bread aroma of some Champagne as a result of the autolysis (when the wine is in contact with the lees). So let’s pop the bottle – sweet and sparkling green grape juice, green tea with lemon and a refreshing barrel-aged dry Riesling. Diluted we got aromas of honeysuckle, juice peaches, as well as creamy, zesty key lime pie which was duly followed on the palate by sweet ripe peaches, honeydew melon and lemon verbena vanilla slices.

26

AUS ALLOCATION 18 bottles Aromas sat on a base of crumbled shortbread and digestive biscuits as floral notes of freesia and honeysuckle fused with icing on a sponge cake. The silky texture of linseed oil with toasted pine nuts created a smooth entrance for delicious apricots and pineapple and mango sorbet. The warming heat of chilli oil greeted the tongue; however sweet notes quickly flooded the senses with lemon sponge cake, caramel wafers and vanilla slices. Fruit notes veered in the direction of lemon boiled sweets and carried a dusting of cinnamon before the finish came wrapped in milk chocolate and with lasting oily textures.


THE PARADISE PATISSERIE

MILKING A COWFISH

JUICY, OAK & VANILLA

OILY & COASTAL

CASK NO. G4.18

$320.00

CASK NO. 52.28

$220.00

REGION

Lowland

REGION

Highland

CASK TYPE

2nd fill ex-bourbon barrel

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon hogshead

AGE

29 years

AGE

11 years

DATE DISTILLED

01 May 1989

DATE DISTILLED

21 March 2007

OUTTURN

241 bottles

OUTTURN

231 bottles

ABV

54.7%

ABV

59.6%

AUS ALLOCATION 24 bottles

AUS ALLOCATION 32 bottles

A magnificent mix of tropical fruits and jelly sweets combined with desiccated coconut to produce a picture of paradise. Just as we were settling into papaya with a squeeze of lime juice we discovered an array of sweet treats that delivered vanilla sponge cake with creme brulee and milk chocolate. Sweet cereal notes morphed into popcorn and caramel whilst the palate carried a hint of tomato plants and a cooling breeze in the form of peppermint and menthol. A wedge of ginger cake with custard came served with a glass of rose tea and sticky Turkish delights before the finish combined balsa wood and cooking chocolate in perfect harmony.

A tough nose. Brutal and full on with baking soda, sourdough, fabric, linene, sea greens, lambic ales, citrus peel, raw lemon juice, sheep wool, soy sauce, smelling salts and kelp. Water softens it only slightly with notes of wild gorse, tart gooseberry, forest floor and trampled ferns. Gets animalistic with these notes of goat and cow stable. New leather and bovril. The mouth is pin sharp on green peppercorns in brine, salty lemons, saline porridge, savoury pastry, brioche, salted butter and cooling wort. Water gives lemon curd, salty popcorn, lemon thyme, beach sand, cloves, caraway, salty liquorice, sour cherries, plum sauce, five spice and miso.

JUICY YET MOUTH-DRYING

PAPAYA THE SAILOR MAN

LIGHTLY PEATED

LIGHTLY PEATED

CASK NO. 135.12

$169.00

reduced from $195.00

CASK NO. 93.102

$199.00

REGION

Highland

REGION

Campbeltown

CASK TYPE

1st fill ex-bourbon barrel

CASK TYPE

1st fill ex-bourbon barrel

AGE

12 years

AGE

11 years

DATE DISTILLED

28 April 2006

DATE DISTILLED

19 June 2007

OUTTURN

192 bottles

OUTTURN

208 bottles

ABV

60.0%

ABV

57.8%

AUS ALLOCATION 42 bottles On the nose the smoke was subtle and distant – the impression was of gooseberry fool, Haribos, toffee and petits fours in plastic dishes on a polished wooden counter. The palate was a satisfying blend of sweetness (watermelon sweets, blackcurrant travel sweets) light spice (clove, nutmeg, peppery nasturtium) and gentle smoke and ash. The reduced nose took us to an outdoor holiday swimming pool, with singed sacking, cigar ash, biscotti and lime marmalade. On the reduced palate, the attractive sweetness started to encompass hints of exotic fruits (star-fruit, papaya, mango sorbet) – followed by a dry, tickling finish of smoke and spice.

AUS ALLOCATION 24 bottles Aromas began with a sweet intensity that combined peated banoffee pie with sugar-coated fennel seeds. A distinct nuttiness transpired that formed into coconut husk on a beach, surrounded by rock pools and dried seaweed. The fruitiness of plums and peaches came rolled in coal dust but introduced a softer floral character like potpourri. Delicious smoked duck on the palate with herbal hues and sea buckthorn that cut through the oils. Mango and papaya emerged in a medicinal smog that settled on carrot juice with ginger and a sprinkling of rock salt. The finish was backed by a firm wedge of tree bark married with an opulent dark chocolate bitterness.

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FARM SALAD LIGHTLY PEATED CASK NO. 66.133

$199.00

YUKO BURKHARDT

Member since 2017

MY FIRST SMWS EVENT WAS AN EYE OPENER. My usual flavour profile is peat, PEAT and SUPER HEAVY PEAT. My partner, now husband, had a little whisky collection and was a member of a whisky club with his friends (called Melbourne Whisky Club if anyone watches Ralfy on YouTube). My first whisky was a Laphroaig 10 (most probably a joke to see my reaction) and to his complete surprise I fell in love with whisky. The love for peat only grew when I first tasted an Ardbeg and I have since taken over the whisky reins at the Burkhardt household. But it was at my first SMWS event in Aug 2017, I met 35.179 Formula Flavour. My world changed. I never knew whisky could actually taste like this. It was a life-altering moment in my whisky journey. Although I still look for peated whisky in every Outturn, I definitely have a soft spot for Glen Moray and wild or interesting casks. My love for peated whisky sent me to Islay, the land of peated whisky. We joined a tour group which drove us around all the Islay distilleries and we visited as many SMWS bars while we were in the UK. We’ve also visited most of the Japanese distilleries and the SMWS bars in Japan. On our last visit to Japan, we did 8 smaller distilleries in 7 days. My most favourite SMWS event is the Xmas party. No one bats an eyelid when you dress up and the drams are flowing.” Yuko Burkhardt 28

REGION

Highland

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon hogshead

AGE

12 years

DATE DISTILLED

06 March 2006

OUTTURN

278 bottles

ABV

57.6%

AUS ALLOCATION

30 bottles

The panel found soot, wood char and watercress at first nosing. Along with clay ovens, smoked earth and rather typical melee of oils, waxes, herbs, lemon peel and hay loft. Water brought out lemon balm, gorse bush, crushed ivy, fabric, coal tar soap and sheep’s wool. A lick of burning heather in the background. It arrives in the mouth with a glistening frying bacon quality. Then notes of grilled artichoke, lemongrass, barley sugar and hay. Some sweet peats, salted peanuts and a mineralic, riesling edge. Dilution revealed a flintier side with white fruits, citrus, flowers, hessian, farmyard qualities and green pepper.

TOKAJI AND TUG BOATS PEATED CASK NO. 53.298

$199.00

’S SUZYTION C SELE

REGION

Islay

CASK TYPE

Refill ex-bourbon hogshead

AGE

11 years

DATE DISTILLED

24 September 2007

OUTTURN

288 bottles

ABV

60.0%

AUS ALLOCATION 24 bottles Waves crashed on a sandy beach as driftwood and seashells mingled on the shore. The smell of coal smoke and engine grease carried on the breeze from a nearby tug boat as it pulled into harbour. As we approached we could almost taste oily mackerel, fresh oysters and sweet salmon smoked with honey. Savoury tones of back olive tapenade and mussels in brine, balanced with a squeeze of lemon juice and the fragrant syrup of Tojaki dessert wine. A waft of peat smoke delivered a characteristically medicinal weight before the finish turned to ash with a lasting salty dryness.


TEA-SMOKED SALMON CASK NO. 10.176

$239.00 REGION

Islay

CASK TYPE

2nd fill Oloroso hogshead

AGE

11 years

DATE DISTILLED

10 December 2007

OUTTURN

266 bottles

ABV

59.2%

AUS ALLOCATION

30 bottles

Photo credit: The Gastronomical

IAL S P E CS K CA H E D FINIS

PEATED

DANIEL MATHERS

Member since 2010

Usually one finishes with fireworks but here we started with them but at the same time somewhere nearby pork tenderloin with maple and walnut figs and red onions was roasting. On the palate, after an initial peat fire ignited we had tea-smoked (soy, ginger and a cilantro marinade) salmon. With water we made sweet cured streaky bacon hash with cabbage served with a nutty herb pesto which we washed down with a German Rauchbier (ham- and bacon-like note, rich, slightly sweet but semi-dry in the finish). After nine years in an ex-bourbon hogshead we transferred this whisky into a second fill Spanish oak ex-Oloroso hogshead.

PEAT BUNDLE Jump into the festive season with this cask strength peat bundle and save on your dramming bill – a great gift or Christmas sharing idea!

ROUTE 66

$535.00

Only 8 available

SAV $48 E

There’s a certain distillery character to 66 which could be best described as stepping aboard a steam train in the Highlands of Scotland. That doesn’t tell you much, but it does tell you you’d be absurd to miss the train on this distillery 66 triple cask bundle for just $535.00 – saving $48!

FULL STEAM AHEAD! LIGHTLY PEATED CASK NO.

66.131

FARM SALAD LIGHTLY PEATED CASK NO.

66.133

A STRONG PERSONALITY PEATED CASK NO.

66.123

My name is Daniel Mathers and in addition to organising the annual Queensland Whisky Expo, I am the Gauger of the North Brisbane Sept of the Queensland Malt Whisky Society. My role is to procure whisky and present what is usually a themed tasting night to our club members.  I love whisky tastings and attending whisky events all around the country.  This is where the Scotch Malt Whisky Society comes in – I regularly attend Society events both in Brisbane and Sydney as sharing the love of whisky with others is what I enjoy most about whisky. Dispelling myths or challenging beliefs is what I love about both presenting and attending whisky tastings and shows all around Australia.  My favourite whisky event in Australia would be the Oak Barrel’s Sydney Whisky Fair – I’ve attended each year for the past 6 years now.  I can’t recall exactly when I joined the Society, it was probably 8 or 9 years ago now, and the bottle that got me seriously into SMWS bottlings was 116.18 – an 18 year old single cask from Yoichi Distillery in Japan.  This whisky changed my life. It might surprise you to know but in the day I recall there being a limit of 1 or 2 bottles per member on this particular bottle. I bought a bottle, drank it over the course of a week or two (remembering that it would have taken a week or so to arrive), and recall jumping on the Society website and still finding a bottle left in stock three weeks later – which I bought. Nowadays it would be lucky to last 30 minutes in the shop!  My favourite whisky profile is one that challenges the perceptions on what you expect purely by knowing what the distillery normally produces or what you read in a review or on the label.  This is what I love about Society bottlings – they often do not represent what the distillery normally produces, and in some cases, actually highlight what the distillery can produce if bottled at pure unadulterated cask strength.  I have my favorite distilleries – come on, who doesn’t love a 33, 76 or 96, but it’s the surprises from 7 or 53 that really spark my interest.” Daniel Mathers 29


A TRIFLE DELIGHTFUL Welcome to our latest experimental heresy bottling – just in time for the festive season! Our whisky team, led by Euan Campbell, has had a lot of fun blending up malts, sherry casks, new makes, peat faeries, and more. For his latest tinkering in the bond store, it was the blending of Cognac that’s led to A trifle delightful. You can read more about A trifle delightful on our website under ‘whiskywise’. Available in this festive Outturn for just $149 per bottle. An ideal bottling to pour over your Christmas cake!

DEEP, DARK AND BROODING

COGNAC

$149.00 REGION

Cognac

CASK TYPE

Cognac barrel

AGE

XO

APPELLATION

Cognac Controlée

OUTTURN

1565 bottles

ABV

42.5%

AUS ALLOCATION 36 bottles

A cascade of rich liquid sunset poured from the bottle and clung to the glass with viscous tears of joy. The nose was the very essence of jubilation, a unity of fruit, flowers and boozy things. Apple crumble with a sprinkling of cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger welcomed the viscidity of orange skin and truffle oil with a tart tang of physalis. Musk perfume created a depth that underpinned lavender, jasmine tea and clary sage with a layer of soft putty. Sherry trifle brought along a wonderfully heady dimension that swung towards marmalade on the malty sweetness of warm rye bread. Soft leather gloves handled fresh cherry tomatoes and eucalyptus leaves while the finish hugged the soul with a warming massage of pickled ginger and a fresh caress from grapefruit pith and soft tannins.

A CUP O’ KINDNESS ARMAGNAC CASK NO. A4.5

RUM CASK NO. R13.1

$649.00

$199.00 REGION

Bas Armagnac

CASK TYPE

Armagnac barrel

REGION

Trinidad

GRAPE VARIETY

Baco

CASK TYPE

1st fill ex-bourbon barrel

AGE

13 years

AGE

20 years

OUTTURN

488 bottles

DATE DISTILLED

01 January 1998

ABV

47.9%

OUTTURN

184 bottles

AUS ALLOCATION 18 bottles

ABV

62.3%

AUS ALLOCATION 12 bottles A deep brooding colour was followed by ‘dark aromas’ – treacle, tar, soot, black olives, damson jam, Demerara sugar and black pepper. Big, funky, delightful on the palate neat – barbequed beef ribs with black garlic and chilli accompanied by roasted artichokes prepared with salt and pepper, garlic cloves and plenty of olive oil as well as heavily barbequed seasoned bacon wrapped shrimps. When we added water, sea salted dark chocolate at first before roasted chestnuts, hot engine oil and blackstrap molasses in hot milk appeared. The taste had a bit of everything now; antiseptic, seaweed, sultanas, fruit marmalade and in the finish a strong sweet Turkish coffee.

30

The nose gives a warm embrace like an old acquaintance. There are blood orange madeleines covered with desiccated coconut and freshly cut figs on the side. Then a fizzy quality reminiscent of citrus sherbet and Love Heart fruit sweets, with the depth of cherry liqueur and chocolate bitters. One panellist was reminded of fine antiques and silverware (Brasso, beeswax). The taste brings rich vanilla pods, Madeira cake, Jamaica ginger cake spread with marmalade. The antique furniture theme continues with hazelnut oil, chocolatey tobacco and nutmeg. Water see us taking a walk in Edinburgh’s Botanic Gardens. A farmhouse table offers banana bread, satsumas, rice pudding with strawberry jam and lime marmalade on buttered toast. There is also a waxy note as fragrant candles flicker. The taste is now refreshing, with peach and apricot yogurt, watermelon and honey, tropical diluting juice and a mouthful of lemon sponge cake. Burns himself might have called it a ‘right gude-willie waught’ – or a hearty drink taken in goodwill.


YOUR PARTNER BARS

SMWS Partner Bars are places to go and meet friends, order a few drams, talk with the amazing bar teams, and discover more about the Society, by the dram. Your incredible Partner Bars for 2019 are:

ARCHIE ROSE

WHISKY & ALEMENT

BAR LAFAYETTE

SYDNEY NSW

MELBOURNE VIC

PERTH WA

THE GRUMPY PIPER LAUNCESTON TAS

archierose.com.au

whiskyandale.com.au

barlafayette.com

thegrumpypiper.com.au

LARK DISTILLERY

THE LOST ONES

HIPPO CO

SHIRT BAR

HOBART TAS

BALLARAT VIC

CANBERRA ACT

SYDNEY NSW

larkdistillery.com

thelostones.com.au

hippoco.com.au

shirtbar.com.au

MELBOURNE WHISKY ROOM

ROCKPOOL BAR & GRILL

ROB ROY HOTEL

MELBOURNE VIC

SYDNEY NSW

robroyhotel.com.au

whiskyandale.com.au/ melbourne-whisky-room

rockpoolbarandgrill.com.au

ADELAIDE SA

31


THE YEAR THAT WAS

AT THE SMWS @SMWS_AUS


EVENTS SYDNEY

CANBERRA

THE MAESTRO RETURNS

OLD SCHOOL – A WHISKY MASTERCLASS

Returning after too long a break, Franz Scheurer – the master of whisky and food matching – is back to deliver an incredible whisky dinner, teaming up with head chef Brent Savage and presenting a menu that takes in the entire Bentley Group restaurants: Bentley Restaurant & Bar, Cirrus Dining, Monopol, and Yellow. If you’ve not experienced Franz, you’ve never experienced a whisky dinner. Come and enjoy a magical evening where 1 + 1 = 3.

MONDAY 11 NOVEMBER, 7.00 FOR 7.30PM

Bentley Restaurant & Bar, Cnr Pitt & Hunter St, Sydney Hosts: Franz Scheurer & Andrew Derbidge

FESTIVE EIGHT PARTY

Come along for our traditional end of year whisky party at the RAC. You choose the drams you’d like to taste from a range of delicious new cask releases. Whisky, delicious food and great company, the perfect way to end the year. All welcome.

FRIDAY 6 DECEMBER, 6.30 FOR 7.00PM

The Society’s Cellarmaster, Andrew Derbidge, will present the ultimate old school whisky masterclass. If you’re a long-term whisky drinker and you remember how tastings were presented 15 years ago, or if you’re newer to whisky and want to experience a masterclass done right, Old School will be right up your alley: A selection of old school whiskies, presented by an old school host, and delivered old school style.

WEDNESDAY 20 NOVEMBER, 6.00 FOR 6.30PM

National Press Club of Australia, 16 National Circuit, Barton Host: Andrew Derbidge, NSW Manager & Cellarmaster

BRISBANE WHISKY & CHOCOLATE FESTIVE FUN Come along for a divinely delicious evening of whisky and chocolate curated and co-hosted by Jasper and Myrtle. Join us as we explore the journey from single origin to handmade bar. All welcome.

Royal Automobile Club, 89 Macquarie St, Sydney Host: Matt Bailey + Society Legends

MELBOURNE

SUPERNORMAL WHISKY LUNCH

Join your National Ambassador for a delicious whisky lunch at the multi award-winning Supernormal restaurant. Incredible food matched to amazing single cask single malts. Limited seating, first in, best dressed.

MONDAY 2 DECEMBER, 6.00 FOR 6.30PM

Cellar Room, Blackbird Restaurant, Riverside Centre, 123 Eagle St, Brisbane Hosts: Scott Mansfield, QLD Manager & Jasper+Myrtle

PERTH

SATURDAY 2 NOVEMBER, 12:30PM

Supernormal, 80 Flinders Lane, Melbourne Host: Matt Bailey, National Ambassador

FESTIVE DRAMS

SMWS X STARWARD FESTIVE DRAMS

Come along for our traditional end of year SMWS whisky party at Starward Distillery. You choose the drams you’d like to taste from a range of delicious new cask releases. Whisky, delicious food and great company, the perfect way to end the year. All welcome.

SATURDAY 7 DECEMBER, 4.00PM TIL 8.00PM

Starward Distillery, 50 Bertie St, Port Melbourne Hosts: Owen Smythe, VIC Manager & Matt Bailey, National Ambassador

WOLLONGONG

WEDNESDAY 4 DECEMBER, 6.00 FOR 6.30PM Old Faithful Bar & BBQ, 86 King Street, Perth Host: Jason Davies, WA Manager

ADELAIDE FESTIVE DRAMS

WHISKY WITH A LATIN TWIST

Join Fred Apolloni at the Fraternity Club for some amazing SMWS whiskies, Italian wines and Mediterranean food. Some divine matches to sit back and enjoy. All welcome. Salute!

FRIDAY 8 NOVEMBER, 7.00 FOR 7.30PM

Il Bene Restaurant, Fraternity Club, 11 Bourke Street, Fairy Meadow Host: Fred Apolloni, Wollongong Manager

Join us for our end of year whisky party at an exciting new venue in Perth CBD. You choose the drams you’d like to taste from a range of delicious new cask releases. Whisky, amazing food and great company, the perfect way to end the year. All welcome.

Join Jenny Forrest at the Rob Roy for some amazing Festive Drams to end the year. Delicious supper, great company, incredible casks! All welcome.

FRIDAY 13 DECEMBER, 6.00 FOR 6.30PM Rob Roy Hotel, 106 Halifax St, Adelaide Host: Jenny Forrest, SA Manager

TO BOOK IN FOR AN EVENT, PLEASE VISIT OUR WEBSITE OR CONTACT OUR OFFICE.

SMWS.COM.AU/EVENTS

33


FESTIVE GIFTING All your gifting needs properly sorted through the Society this festive season.

SPIRIT & WHISKY TASTING GLASSES The Society’s stylish spirit and whisky tasting glasses are the perfect companion for your festive season dramming.

Y WHISKS GLAS

$20

These elegant glasses have been specifically designed to maximise your nosing and tasting experience.

SOCIETY TASTING KIT A beautifully presented and luxurious award-winning Society Tasting Kit containing three limited-release 10cl Society single cask malt whiskies, a Members Handbook and that must-have lapel badge.

$180

Both styles of glass come in a beautiful presentation box.

SP G L AI R I T SS

$30

THE GATHERING DISCOVERY PACK Five 25ml celebratory drams specially curated by the Tasting Panel across a wide range of flavour profiles. Four of these whiskies are also available in full 70cl bottle size in this month’s Outturn, so a perfect opportunity to try before you buy!

Click here to watch the accompanying video on Youtube

THE FOUNDER’S TALE

BOTTLE GIFT CARTON Give your bottle the presentation it deserves with a luxurious bespoke Society gift box.

$15

A good idea and a glass of malt started the world’s largest whisky club as we know it today. Founder of the Society, Pip Hills, shares his adventures about how he and his friends brought Scotland’s finest product to a waiting world. Enjoy this maverick tale over a celebratory Christmas dram.

$35

A MUST-READ FOR MEMBERS!

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GIFT-GIVING STARTS HERE: SMWS.COM.AU/SHOP

$120


25 CASKS FOR CHRISTMAS A DRAM A DAY FOR DECEMBER? SOUNDS LIKE HEAVEN. We finally have a full single cask advent calendar to share with members for 2019, with our 25 casks for Christmas pack. Each day, pop a window open, grab a Society glass, and pour yourself (and a friend) a unique and rare single cask sample for the festive season.

$39

9

Stocks are limited so don’t delay!

GIVE THE GIFT OF MEMBERSHIP The Society is about its members and this time of year is a great way to introduce people into the world’s leading whisky club. Give the gift of membership plus tasting kit this Christmas for a friend 0 or family member! $30

SMWS.COM.AU/SHOP

35


FESTIVE ORDERING

This is your Christmas 2019 edition of Outturn. Time to sort out your stocking fillers and select your seasonal spirits to tide you over the festive season! Make sure you order early for delivery in time for Christmas.

SHIPPING For delivery in time for Christmas, we recommend placing your order by Friday 6th December. Left it a bit late? For Express Post or Courier delivery, please contact our office.

FESTIVE SEASON OPENING HOURS The Society’s office will be closed from Tuesday 24th December, re-opening on Thursday 2nd January, the day before our First Friday releases of the New Year! Orders placed online between Christmas and New Year will be dispatched as usual excluding public holidays.

WE WISH YOU AND YOURS A SAFE AND HAPPY HOLIDAY SEASON!

GIFTS TO TRUMPET ABOUT SMWS.COM.AU

02 9974 3046 Mon-Fri 9.00am - 5.00pm AEDT

@SMWS_AUSTRALIA

AUSTRALIANSMWS

SMWS_AUS

Society whiskies are offered and sold through The Wine Empire Pty Ltd, Liquor Licence LIQP770010175.

Profile for The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

Outturn Nov-Dec 2019  

Outturn Nov-Dec 2019