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Bowmore

The River Laggan journeys many miles through Islay, cutting its course through ferrous rocks and peat bog, moss and grassy mound, ‘til it finds itself at the Western harbour town of Bowmore, Islay’s capital. The distillery produces some two million litres annually and adheres to strict traditions; production methods have scarcely changed in two centuries. Founded in 1779, by John Simpson, Bowmore is Islay’s oldest distillery. Following purchase in 1837, by William and James Mutter, the distillery was resold in 1892 to the Bowmore Distillery Company Ltd.

Changing hands twice during the late 1920s, in 1963 the distillery was purchased for £117,000 by Stanley P Morrison. Bowmore has had a long affiliation with Japanese pioneers Suntory who acquired a stake in the company during the late 1980s. In 1994, they bought the company outright. Bowmore enjoys a curious middle-ground as far as flavour is concerned; far from being a lighter offering - à la Northern Islay-based Bunnahabhain - the spirit is not as heavily peated nor as smoky as its three Southern cousins surrounding Port Ellen.

Today, Bowmore produces a heralded malt and the second best-selling Islay whisky after the leviathan Laphroaig. The range is quite large and independent bottlings have been released as well as a core range of acclaimed house bottlings, including the rare 1993 released Black Bowmore, a 1964 vintage whose initial asking price was around £2,500.

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About Bowmore Whisky Distillery

Distillery Number

01496 810441

Distillery Founded

1779

Distillery Capacity

2 000 000 litres

Distillery Status

Active

Distillery Address

Bowmore, Islay, Argyll

Distillery Owner

Morrison Bowmore Distillers (Suntory)

Distillery Address

School Street, Bowmore, Islay, Argyll PA43 7GS

Distillery Website

www.bowmore.com

1779

Bowmore Distillery is founded by John Simpson and becomes the oldest Islay distillery.

1837

The distillery is sold to James and William Mutter of Glasgow.

1892

After additional construction, the distillery is sold to Bowmore Distillery Company Ltd, a consortium of English businessmen.

1925

J. B. Sheriff and Company takes over.

1929

Distillers Company Limited (DCL) takes over.

1950

William Grigor & Son takes over.

1963

Stanley P. Morrison buys the distillery

1989

Japanese Suntory buys a 35% stake in Morrison Bowmore.

1993

The famous, legendary Black Bowmore is launched. The recommended price is £100 (today it is at least ten times that if it can be found). Another two versions are released 1994 and 1995.

1994

Suntory now controls all of Morrison Bowmore.

1995

Bowmore is nominated ‘Distiller of the Year’ in the International Wine and Spirits competition.

1996

A Bowmore 1957 (38 years) is bottled at 40,1% but is not released until 2000.

1999

Bowmore Darkest with three years finish on oloroso barrels is launched. A Claret cask strength is also released in 12,000 bottles.

2000

Bowmore Dusk with two years finish in Bordeaux barrels is launched.

2001

Bowmore Dawn with two years finish on port pipes is launched. A bottle from 1890 is sold at an auction in Glasgow and brings in £14,300 which is a new world record. The Manager Jim McEwan moves to Bruichladdich.

2002

A 37 year old Bowmore from 1964 and matured in fino casks is launched in a limited edition of 300 bottles (recommended price

2003

Another two expressions complete the wood trilogy which started with 1964 Fino - 1964 Bourbon and 1964 Oloroso.

2004

Morrison Bowmore buys one of the most outstanding collections of Bowmore Single Malt from the private collector Hans Sommer. It totals more than 200 bottles and includes a number of Black Bowmore.

2005

Bowmore 1989 Bourbon (16 years) and 1971 (34 years) are launched.

2006

Bowmore 1990 Oloroso (16 years) and 1968 (37 years) are launched. A new and upgraded visitor centre is opened.

2007

Dusk and Dawn disappear from the range and an 18 year old is introduced. New packaging for the whole range. 1991 (16yo) Port and Black Bottle are released.

2008

White Bottle and a 1992 Vintage with Bourdeaux finish are launched.

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Tempest is a very special release from Bowmore, it’s a cask strength malt made by vatting first-fill bourbon matured whisky. Very rich and complex.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
$77.33
This was distilled on the 22nd November 1985 and matured in hogshead number 32203 for 23 years before bottling by Signatory on the 13th January 2009. A release of just 234 bottles of cask strength...  More info
Our 26 year old Bowmore has oodles of character. It's full of flavours from old-fashioned tuck shops; from Drumstick lollies, to Fruit Salad Chews – and including the one particular flavour that truly...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (3.5/5)
A rich, smouldering single cask Bowmore from Signatory's superb Cask Strength Collection... This was distilled on the 13th June 1997 before a 15 year maturation in hogshead number 1903 before bottling...  More info
$122.26
This is a delicious cask-strength Bowmore from Berry Brothers and Rudd. It was distilled in 1996, aged in a single cask (number 1378) and bottled in 2011.  More info
$85.29
A 1990 vintage from the Bowmore distillery, bottled at cask strength, this 16 year old was matured in Oloroso sherry casks and the sherry notes really shine through with enough strength to match up to...  More info
Bowmore 37 Year Old 1968
(70cl, 43.40%)
A 37 year old offering from Bowmore, matured in ex-bourbon casks and presents a rare bottling from an outturn of just 708 bottles. A spicy, oily, slightly vegetal whisky of excellent depth.  More info
Just 732 bottles of this 1964 vintage Bowmore were released. Part of a trio from that year, this one with the moniker 'White', was named after the lighter colour that bourbon maturation tends to...  More info
$8724.99
Bowmore 16 Year Old 1989
(70cl, 51.80%)
A cask strength 16 year old, a rare edition from a vatting of 134 casks of 1989 vintage Bowmore, most of the casks were ex-bourbon. The resultant single malt is thick and exudes fruit and floral...  More info
A cask strength release from the Islay distillery, Bowmore. This 'Claret' finish whisky has been matured for 16 years, with a finish in a Bordeaux Wine Cask - the label is emblazoned, accordingly...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (5.0/5)
A very rare 42 year old from the Islay distillery, Bowmore. This single malt has been matured in Oloroso sherry casks and is part of a limited release of just 827 bottles. A legendary dram.  More info
A 2007 release of 25 year old whisky from the Bowmore distillery. The older whiskies used in this single malt were aged in predominantly sherry casks and this has brought a lovely roundness with...  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.5/5)
$365.73
This is the first batch of That Boutique-y Whisky Company’s Bowmore. This offering is a peaty style with a sherried streak running right through the middle of it.

‘That Boutique-y Whisky Company’...  More info
This twelve year old Bowmore distilled in 1989 was bottled by Lombard for their Jewels of Scotland range. Bowmore is the oldest distillery on the island of Islay and is a peated style of single malt...  More info
$107.69
This is twenty-two year old Bowmore was bottled by Berry Brothers and Rudd from a single cask.  More info
$155.11
This is a twenty year old Bowmore bottled by Mackillop's Choice in 2012. Bowmore is the oldest distillery on Islay and produces a smoky malt whisky.  More info
This is a twenty-two year old Bowmore from independent bottlers Murray MsDavid's Mission range. Bowmore is the oldest distillery on the storm-swept isle of Islay and displays peaty coastal flavours...  More info
$166.96
Bowmore 100 Degrees Proof
(100cl, 57.10%)
Produced for the travel market, Bowmore 100 degrees Proof is a cask-strength, non chill-filtered Bowmore that packs a hefty maritime punch.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
$134.25
Bowmore Springtide
(70cl, 54.90%)
Bowmore Springtide is the distillery's premium offering for the travel retail market, a cask strength, non chill-filtered single malt predominantly matured in first-fill Spanish Oloroso sherry casks.  More info
$335.75
A 15-year-old expression from Bowmore, aimed at the travel retail market, Mariner is a very different Bowmore with a maritime twist.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
$117.46
This was distilled in 1985 and aged in sherry and bourbon casks in the renowned Bowmore No. 1 Vaults. This was bottled in 2012 at natural cask strength for the 2012 Feis Ile (Islay Festival) and there...  More info
$1343.27
A Bowmore from Kilchoman? Sort of... Kilchoman uses the MacBeatha name to market their single cask bottlings from other Islay distilleries. This is the fourth edition in the range, a single cask...  More info
$146.09
Islay ales have used the grist from Bowmore to brew their beer, then matured the result it in an ex-bourbon barrel that previously housed Bowmore whisky.
It's a hefty beer with heavy malty notes and...  More info
$16.71
Bowmore Enigma is a 12-year-old expression with a higher proportion of sherry matured whisky than the standard bottling.
Bottled for the travel retail market, this is rich and very drinkable.  More info
User Rating:  Rating (4.0/5)
$83.88
This Bowmore was bottled in 2012 by Berry Brothers and Rudd. Bowmore is the oldest distillery on Islay and still delivers a top quality Scotch.  More info
$80.55
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