Eleventh heaven as society wins whisky awards

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society has won Cask Strength, Scotch Whisky of the Year.

Their bottle Cask 3.305 – The Scents of Perfection was crowned at the International Wine & Spirit Competition 2018 (IWSC).

The 28-year-old Islay whisky, which was released in December 2017 with only 209 bottles available to SMWS members, also won a Gold Outstanding award. Listed under the SMWS flavour profile of Old & Dignified, the whisky spent 26 years in an ex-bourbon hogshead before being transferred to a 1st fill Pedro Ximinez hogshead for the remainder of its maturation.

The taste of the whisky is described by the Society’s Tasting Panel as ‘dark fruits soaked in port followed with chocolate-covered Brazil nuts and banoffee pie’ with a nose of a ‘heavenly reek of smoked bacon mingled with coffee ice cream, butterscotch and lemon thyme on the finish.’

The SMWS achieved an impressive haul of awards for an independent bottler, winning 10 other awards including a Gold for Cask 4.239 – High sea rebellion and Silver Outstanding for Cask 36.138 – Fruit baskets in a painted room and Cask 42.43 – Smoky spiced red rye ale.

As with all Society releases, they are limited edition and members have snapped up most of the awarded whiskies, but Cask 35.203 – Feria de Jerez is still available in the UK/EU. The Society’s Tasting Panel described this Speyside whisky as having a ‘full aroma of sweet potatoes with dried figs, caramelised apples and Chantilly cream’ and a ‘lively taste of dark chocolate covered figs and Sherry soaked Medjool dates.’

The Society releases an outturn of new whisky every month and still has exciting plans for the rest of the year, including a range of new single cask whiskies in their August outturn along with the release of a rum, Armagnac and cognac under their Single Cask Spirits collection.

Founded in 1969, the International Wine & Spirit Competition awards excellence in wines and spirits worldwide, encouraging recognition for quality products. 90 countries worldwide enter the competition and each sample is treated with the same care and consideration in the IWSC’s dedicated tasting premises.

Kai Ivalo, spirits director at the SMWS said: ‘This year we are celebrating the 35th anniversary of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society and we’re delighted to mark this by winning Cask Strength Scotch Whisky of the Year, along with an array of other awards.

‘These awards acknowledge the best spirits in the world and follow on from taking home seven awards at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition in May earlier this year. It’s the perfect way to mark our 35th anniversary.’

The full awards won by the SMWS were:

Cask 3.305 – The scents of perfection, Cask Strength Scotch Whisky 2018.

Cask 3.305 – The scents of perfection, Gold Outstanding 2018.

Cask 36.138 – Fruit baskets in a painted room, Silver Outstanding 2018.

Cask 42.43 – Smoky spiced red rye ale, Silver Outstanding 2018.

Cask 50.96 – A day trip to heaven, Silver 2018.

Cask 52.21 – Tropical breezes fill the sails, Silver 2018.

Cask 35.203 – Feria de Jerez, Bronze 2018.

Cask 29.240 – Seventh heaven, Bronze 2018.

Cask 4.239 – High sea rebellion, Gold 2018.

Cask 9.133 – Elixir of the gods, Silver 2018.

Cask 29.225 – Slapped by a kipper, Silver 2018

For more details on the SMWS click HERE.