Glen Moray

SMWS 35.223 A Theta State of Mind

Glen Moray 31 Years Old 1986 35.223 A Theta State of Mind (56.5%, SMWS, 1st Fill Sauternes, 139 Bottles, 2018)


What they say

  • WHISKY ABV 56.5%
  • AGE 31 years
  • CASK TYPE First Fill Ex-Sauternes Barrique
  • WHISKY FLAVOUR Old & dignified
  • WHISKY OUTTURN 1 of 139 bottles
  • WHISKY REGION Speyside

Official tasting notes:

Give this one time – this is a meditative dram. Imagine being in an incense ceremony at a Buddhist temple; the air is heavy with the scent of sandalwood, peony and Kyara (meaning ‘precious’ – the highest grade of agarwood). Following ‘the sound of the gong’ we had a sip. It was still lively for its age yet also smooth, like a Buddhist monk’s satin robe with a hint of fragrant smoke. A drop of water and it burst into life, like the cherry blossom in Japan, and on the taste so soothing and relaxing with a lingering spicy finish. After twenty-nine years in an ex-bourbon hogshead we transferred this whisky into a first-fill Sauternes barrique.

What I say

Dram #2 from EWB’s Movember tasting was this Glen Moray expression from The Scotch Malt Whisky Society. A single cask expression matured for 31 years; 29 years in an ex-bourbon hogshead and finished in a 1st Fill ex Sauternes barrique.

My tasting notes:

  • Appearance:  Amber gold (10/20)
  • Nose: Sweet and spicy, fruity white and red grape, apple, blackberry, some citrus grapefruit and orange oil/zest a touch floral and plenty of cinnamon, sandalwood and polished antique oak.
  • Taste: Medium-bodied, fruity and woody, again fruits lead with mixed woodland berries and orchard fruits, followed by grapefruit and orange citrus, oak wood, sandalwood, cinnamon and white pepper spices.
  • Finish: Long, woody oak overpowers the sweetness in the finish, tannic and drying.


Another lovely and well-aged dram, the Sauternes finish may have added plenty of sweetness and fruit but the impact seems really rather subtle and I suspect I can taste just as much French oak influence here as I can from the sweet Sauternes wine.

Score 86/100

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