Swedish whisky has been paving the way for years, brands such as Mackmyra, High Coast and Spirit of Hven are widely available and also Smögen is becoming increasingly popular. Reason enough for me to pay a little more attention to Swedish whisky because I have actually overlooked that in the past. Why that is? No idea, just too busy with other (mostly Scottish) single malts I think. Anyway, all in good time and so today a bit of attention for what possibly could be the best whisky distillery in Sweden, namely Smögen.
Founded in 2009, Smögen has been around for a few years now. But it seems not as widely available as for instance Mackmyra, High Coast and the Spirit of Hven. So far, I’ve only seen it available in Sweden (obviously) and The UK. The distillery’s goal is to produce high quality, powerful and smoky whisky, and I think that worked out really well. All releases are in small batches.
This Smögen has matured in 4 barrique casks (225 litres) that previously held red wine from Bordeaux and is bottled at 60.3% ABV.
Smögen Barrique! tasting notes:
Nose: A lovely layer of peat. A bonfire. But also very fruity with mostly forest fruits, such as blueberries, strawberries and sweet blackberries. Later also sweet black cherries. Black pepper in the background.
Taste: Very oily. And very fruity again. Sweet fruits, also blueberries. Raspberries. A nice layer of honey. Salted caramel and hazelnuts. Not overly peated, but it’s there alright. Water brings out the sweet fruits more.
Finish: Mid-long to long. The peat is more to the foreground here. Salty and peppery. And the dark fruits are here as well, but more towards the background to appear again in the very end. A slight earthy note too here.
Oh, this is lovely. It’s only 7 years old, but what a good flavours. Never too sweet, what I normally have with red wines casks, but always nice in balance. Water makes it milder and less aggressive but it is perfectly drinkable without water. Yup this is a powerhouse, but it works. Well done!