Bowmore 26-year-old

Overall rating
Single Malt
Distillery Bottling
Bottling serie
The Vintner's Trilogy - French Oak Barrique
Stated Age
26 years old
Ex-Bourbon Barrels & Wine Barriques
48.7 % Vol.
700 ml 750 ml
Bottle code
Added on
11 Sep 2017 4:19 pm by maltaholic

Average value

€ 419.31

96 × in wishlist

211 × member ratings

411 × in collection

Whisky Reviews for Bowmore 26-year-old

35 users have left a review for this whisky and scored it an average of 90.67 points

  1. hs305 scored this whisky 90 points Connoisseur

    [August, 2020] After a decade of horrable quality during the eighties Bowmore managed to turn things around and from 1989 on the quality of Bowmore vintages significantly increased - but they still refuse to tell either what they did wrong during the eighties or what they changed in 1989, alternatively. This release is of vintage 1990/1 so it should be good...

    ...and it is! It shows the typical profile of a double maturation with both the bourbon barrels and the wine butts contributed a fair share. Of course, the wine influence is bigger (no wonder in a 50:50 setting with 13 years each) but it does not bury all other flavours, thanks to the whisky gods. I like it, but still the glorious sixties resp. early seventies Bowmore profile is far better than this.
    • Nose
      90 90
      The colour is tawny and the nose offers a fine mix of sour winey, sweet vanilla and bitter peaty aromas supplemented by the trademark Bowmore fruits. The fruits are rather shy first but they open up upon breathing as do some waxy and maritime impressions. A fine nose, indeed - but the wine aromas are a little too dominant and drive this nose somewhat out of balance. This might be great if you are in for the wine flavours but I am a whisky lover and therefore "wine is fine" but whisky aromas are even better (to me).
    • Taste
      91 91
      The taste offers about the same profile with the sour-sweet winey flavours in the driver's seat. It is not layered but chewing strengthens the malt flavours and both the barley sugars and fruits gain ground what I like. The peat is quite present as are the woods and they contain the wine influence nicely, just the malt could be a little stronger. Some water strengthens both peat and wood but not the malt, unfortunately. A further reduction flattens the dram so I prefer it neat or just a little reduced.
    • Finish
      88 88
      The initial mouthfeel is a little hot but quickly turns into a satisfying warming impression with just a little coating effect only. The finish is of medium length which corresponds to the rather average-only texture. It adds more barley sugary and spicy wooden flavours but turns a little drying towards the end (which is not distracting).

  2. didi1893 scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    Fantastic, just fantastic! The combination of sweet, dried fruits with smoky peat flavors and salty hints is really impressive, as is the dominant wine barrel.

    23/23/23/23 (92P)
    • Nose
      Creamy, rusty with a beautiful orange glow, the Bowmore rests in the glass. On the glass wall of my Premium Sniffer long and oily "legs" draw their paths back into the glass. Salty and incredibly fruity, a wonderful aroma rises, mineral peat plays with dried grapes and berries, a touch of tropical fruits is also there. Caramelized sugar rises from the intense and dominant barrique barrel, which can not be denied. Raisins and plums follow, minimal sulfur (rather sulphured raisins) ends in sweet and fruity peat, a minimal smokiness reminds me of smoked pancetta which is fried in a lot of butter. Once again, brine comes into its own, charred wood elements and a touch of ash dissolve out of the intensifying peat. Sweet vanilla slowly takes command after the initially very dominant wine barrel increasingly withdraws and leaves the fruity sweetness with slightly smoky peat the field.
    • Taste
      Creamy and sweet, the first sip flows over the tongue. Immediately afterwards follow salt, peat, minimal smoke and spicy oak, the mouthfeel becomes greasy and creamy. Pleasant sharpness develops on the tongue while hints of smoke and peat combine with dried grapes and berries. The barrel barrel dominates the taste in its unmistakable manner. Raisins and sweet grapes end in freshly sawn wood chips, the nearby burning peat fire exudes its wonderful aroma, again bacon is left out in butter and floats oily in the saliva under the tongue. Caramelized sugar and old toffee make me think of milk chocolate for a while before slowly adding a plump warmth to the palate and announcing the echo.
    • Finish
      The whole spectrum of taste is echoed in the end, oily and greasy, the wonderful flavors remain a memorable eternity in memory and calls the wonderful combination of sweet fruit and smoky peat repeatedly in the memory.

  3. Jackson05 scored this whisky 90 points Expert Senior

    Bowmore 26 year 48.7% Vintners Trilogy

    N: Raspberries and dark chocolate on shortbread. Dark cherry. It’s got a light herbal note, a backbone of ash running through as well. Gravel/minerals not unlike a Springbank.

    P: The herbal note presents itself more, liquorice root, earthy, red berries, cherry, gravel, cocoa nibs

    F: Herbs, slate, stems, ash, vanilla, raspberry, dark chocolate, dry. It’s all nicely integrated and just works.

    It’s different, but no one note dominates the other. It’s quite elegant in its own way, not pushy, but all flavours co-mingling. In some ways reminds me of a more refined Springbank 12 cask strength. I like it quite a bit.


  4. mr_barleycorn scored this whisky 90 points Expert Senior

    The full review and comparison with the Bowmore 19 French Oak Barrique is available on mrbarleycorn.com
    • Nose
      91 91
      Full, sweet, with many herbs, honey and sweet fruit. There are apricots, red forest berries and a ripe mango at the same time. This is accompanied by a piece of milk chocolate and a hint of vanilla. Tender peat smoke gives the whole a nice extra dimension. All together makes a wonderful overall picture.
    • Taste
      90 90
      Soft, oily and then as in the nose with honey, meadow herbs, a noticeable influence of wood, white pepper, wild berries, again mango, apricot jam, coniferous forest, vanilla and like a hint of smoke.
    • Finish
      89 89
      Long and warm with white pepper, dark fruit, mint and baking cocoa.

  5. Moses scored this whisky 92 points Connoisseur

    Philip Reim says:
    “After 6 to 7 minutes in the glass, a thick cloud of melted butter and sweet popcorn as well as green and black tea is waiting for you. A feast for the nose.

    And if that inspires you, wait for your mouth first.

    Have samples again. The notes are coming soon.

  6. Andreas W. scored this whisky 93 points Expert Senior

    I really like this Bowmore. Today it's worth 93 points (N93 / G94 / A91)
    • Nose
      93 93
      The gentle peat smoke carries a wonderful mixture of berries and raisins at first, followed by salty, slightly smoked ham
    • Taste
      94 94
      First sweet grapes, followed by spicy oak which is carried by a delicate and slightly salty smoky note. This puts me mentally at a slowly glowing bonfire on the beach.
    • Finish
      91 91
      Sweet fruit flashes briefly, the slightly salty and smoked ham reports back to the smoldering campfire.

  7. ctu scored this whisky 91 points Connoisseur

    Nice old Bowmore, works well the french barrique wines effect. 91/92.
    • Nose
      91 91
      Forest fruits, vanilla, honey, camphor, peat, herbals, milk chocolate, butter caramel and sawdust.
    • Taste
      92 92
      Citruses, honey, herbals, matured oak, pepper, tropical fruits and smoke.
    • Finish
      91 91
      Long, fruity, spicy, oaky, smoky.

  8. schengel10 scored this whisky 93 points Connoisseur

    A real top malt - nice packaging - limited - proud price!
    • Nose
      fruity (blueberries, juicy plums, grapes), dry, wood shavings, buttery, trace smoke;
    • Taste
      diluted: intensive powerful start, old oak, spice, pepper, slightly burning, plums, grapes, dark chocolate, enormously complex;
    • Finish
      long, slightly sweet, fruity finish; in the finish, old oak;

  9. Kantenmechaniker scored this whisky 91 points Connoisseur

    What should one say. Old Bowmore with Weinfassreifung, that can only be good (unless it is zugekleistert with violets). Great whisky. There are already many really good Bowmore out there.
    • Nose
      93 93
      wow is the intense and multi-faceted, clearly after 13 years, the wine barrel is fully there and also brings neat spicy oak, red fruit, concentrated, a brew, behind it is creamy, vanilla, slightly mint, at the beginning I had briefly violets, but that is now gone, milk chocolate, some salt, in the chocolate swim little fried bacon cubes, after the first sip the creamy ex-bourbon notes come through more clearly in the nose
    • Taste
      91 91
      Taste explosion, floral, red fruits, cherry, tart oak, cinnamon, a pinch of pepper, a little acid, creamy, cocoa, which also brings some sweetness, initially little smoke, but then comes gradually, ashen, very smooth, pleasant drinking
    • Finish
      90 90
      warming, fruity, vanilla, slightly dark, unfortunately a bit short, towards the end a hint of smoke also in the finish, with the second and third sips, then a little longer, briefly flashes in the mouth a violet, that was probably the flowery note before

  10. Noface83 scored this whisky 92 points Specialist

    Great Bowmore, even one of the best I've ever had and if you can afford a must-have.
    • Nose
      94 94
      Nose: wow what NEN horny part. Blossom nectar, typical slightly bacon aromatic Bowmore smoke, plums, some salt, vanilla and blueberries, slightly sour wine note, a little bit of bitterness and tea brews but hardly any oak. A true flavor celebration that combines Islay's character and wine flavors super.
    • Taste
      90 90
      Very creamy. Now something of the old Bowmoor's floral perfume note. Baconous smoke. Vanilla and grapes, blueberries and some salt and pepper behind.
      Also very good but you have to like the flowery Bowmore character. But getting better and better from sip to sip.
    • Finish
      92 92
      Fantastic finish, the flowery sweetness is only subtly for the slightly maritime character in conjunction with the warm smoke again stronger. Lots of wine sweetness (cooked bright fruits), berry wine, plums and dry wood. The finish is damned long, very dry and ends with smoke and old oak.


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