Bowmore Mizunara Cask Finish, 53.9%

Price: $1000 Issue: Winter 2015 Reviewer: Dave Broom

It's only right that the first single malt scotch given a period of time (3 years in this case) in Japanese oak (mizunara) casks is from Beam Suntory-owned Bowmore. It's a fascinating mix of the vanilla, spice, and incense notes of mizunara and Bowmore's distillery characteristics. You get rich peat, black pepper, apricot, and peach all playing alongside each other. The palate is clean and lighter than the nose suggests, with a fresh zestiness before the smoke leans back in.