Glen Moray SMWS 35.138 “Miss American Pie” & SMWS 35.142 “Sweet treats and forbidden pleasures”

Thanks to /u/boyd86 and /u/lasidar for these samples.

I’m very proud to be part of the whisky group, both the official one (The Toronto Whisky Society) and as the informal one (the drunk buggers who have accepting wives). Why? Because it’s not a big circlejerk.

Oh, there’s consensus. A lot of us are peat heads, for example. However there are also people who aren’t. Some of us like Bourbon; others not so much. Still others enjoy Jura, like me, and are shunned when it comes up.

This enables us to see things from multiple viewpoints. It opens up doors for us. No one gets shit for hating on things, and usually do for being overt fanboys.

Case in point, 1st fill toasted oak hogshead whiskies. And virgin butts (however that’s a joke for another day). Those are the extreme loves of one of our members. Such love he has for butts, he does not care. His anaconda don’t want none unless you got buns.

I, on the other hand, don’t have a lot of experience with 1st fill toasted oak hogheads. As such I don’t get involved in these. Luckily for me he and another lover of these toasties gave me samples to try them.

The oak here is an odd one. I can’t find anyone who talks about using a toasted oak hogshead at all save for Glen Moray from SMWS. I have to assume these are not ex-bourbon. It doesn’t help that Glen Moray experiments with wine casks quite a bit.

So let’s see what this mystery cask does to the whisky.

SMWS 35.138 2.jpg

Glen Moray SMWS 35.138 “Miss American Pie”

Price: Sold out

Region: Speyside

Date Distilled: November 1994

Age: 20 years

Cask Type: 1st fill toasted oak hogshead

Outturn: 247

Abv: 56.4%

SMWS 35.138 1.jpg

Colour: 2.5Y 7/8

Nose: Sandy beach, vanilla, lilies, hay, canned pears, sunflower

Initially smells exactly like the beech, warts and all. Very strong nose on this one. Lots of interesting, light notes. Gentle, one would say. Not totally my thing but nice, I would say. Actually I just did.

If this nose was a colour, it’d be a nice yellow. Whatever the hell that means. Fuck, I need a drink.

Taste: Honey tea, lemon rind, cashew milk, brown sugar

Taste is light. Initially a little bit of sweetness. Given time it opens up to some molasses, and we get really wacky and crazy.

Joking aside, it’s nice to sip on. The flavours, though few, are complex. Summer type dram, if you will.

Finish: Straw, dry cider, nori, pear, wood, pumpkin seeds, orange rind, butter ginger

Finish is closer to the nose, however now it’s more dry. A dry bomb, if you will. Don’t want your bomb getting wet, otherwise you use too much toilet paper.

Maybe I got something mixed up there.

It’s dry. There’s some interesting flavours that make me go back for more, but really dry.

Conclusion: This isn’t my thing. That’s simple enough to see. That’s why my score is low.

That said, this is a summer dram, pure and simple. It’s developed a lighter side. It doesn’t taste the age, but it also doesn’t taste bad. I can see someone enjoying this for these points, and more. Me? Not so much. I’m a philistine. It felt like the great start to a dram that never ended. Or like a movie where the third act falls apart.

Or jerking off without an orgasm. Not my thing. Or rather, nothing hit the right spot for me to finish.


smws 35.142 2.jpg

Glen Moray SMWS 35.142 “Sweet treats and forbidden pleasures”

Price: Sold out

Region: Speyside

Date Distilled: November 1994

Age: 21 years

Cask Type: 1st fill toasted oak hogshead

Outturn: 264

Abv: 56.2%

smws 35.142 1.jpg

Colour: 10YR 6/8

Nose: Butter, vegetal, basil, raspberry cane, vanilla, molasses, cashew, green melon, tarragon

Different this time. This has more vegetation in it. Sweetness rounds it out. Lots of nutty flavours. If the other one was a boring summer day, then this is a proper Spring working day.

Dear God my protestant work ethic will be the death of me.

Sorry, off track. The most interesting part of the nose for me was the fruit notes. Where as everything could be picked apart and easily figured out, the fruit always felt like it was leaning away.

Taste: Tarragon, basil, lemon, cocoa butter, walnut oil

Herbal. Very herbal.Not Jägermeister herbal. Maybe a good Chartreuse herbal? Maybe. The interesting nose is gone. There’s some nice fat notes here. Or rather oleogustus, if I’m going to use that one.

This is mostly oleogustus as time goes on. As much as I like to chew the fat, drinking it with herbs isn’t turning my crank.

Finish: Wood, cherry, cocoa, almond extract, dry pear, banana

Finish is quite nice, though wood forward, dry, and nutty. Not much to report here. It finishes nicely, no off notes. Any fat from before isn’t there.

Conclusion: This is the type of dram that goes from 1st to 3rd to 185th street. And you thought you were going the bathroom.

The nose, taste, and finish are disjoint. They aren’t bad. They aren’t great. I like the nose the most. I think the taste was fatty. And the finish is good, but I want more when they are this old. Like dating in your 30s, you expect the other person to have some shit worked out by now.

I wanted to like these more, but I don’t think they are my thing. They are well made. And interesting. But for me it isn’t my favourite Glen Moray, and perhaps I’ll just stick to ex-bourbon ones from now on.


Scotch reviews #597-598, Speyside reviews #183-184, Whisky Network reviews #993-994

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