Rare & Old Vintages


        1955 Vintage 40 Years Old               1969 Vintage 40 Years Old        
      1957 Vintage 38 Years Old             1969 Vintage 50 Years Old      
      1957 Vintage 54 Years Old             1972 Vintage 34 Years Old      
      1961 Vintage 50 Years Old             1973 Vintage 43 Years Old      
      1964 Vintage 35 Years Old             1980 Vintage (rel.2004)      
      1964 Vintage 46 Years Old             Timeless 27 Years (r.2020)      
      1965 Vintage 42 Years Old             Timeless 31 Years (r.2020)      
      1965 Vintage 52 Years Old             Aged 30 Years (rel.2020)      
      1966 Vintage 50 Years Old             Aged 40 Years (rel.2021)      
      1967 Vintage 40 Years Old                    

1955 Vintage - 40 Years Old - 42.0%


  1955 Distillation
40 Years Old

306 bottles released in 1995

12 bottles stayed at
the distillery for tasting



The crafting of the spirit

It was an unremarkable clear and sunny morning on the 22nd of November 1955, when this spirit was poured into its oak cask. The Gulf stream that warms the sea off Islay took the edge off the brisk breeze that blew from the West over the Atlantic swell. These same waters of Loch Indaal still pound the walls of Bowmore Distillery on the Hebridean Island of Islay, and seep through to the maturation vaults deep below, imparting the unique character to its Malt Whisky.

For four decades this remarkable whisky has lain in the
same silent dark vaults and for twenty years the whisky breathed deep through its bourbon hogshead oak cask and matured becoming rich in colour and warm and subtle in flavour. Then, after transfer to a carefully selected sherry butt, it was once again laid to rest in the same vaults for a further two decades under the care of the men of Bowmore Distillery. Seven distillery managers carefully monitored its maturation and followed its progress to its ultimate bottling at cask strength.

This unique Bowmore, 40 Years Old, 1955 Vintage, Islay Single Malt Scotch Whisky is a celebration of the skills of the Master Craftsman. The whisky is finally presented in a manner which reflects similar care and attention to detail and, once again, continues to honour the art and the tradition of such skills.

This hand crafted glass decanter has been individually blown, hand cut and engraved by the artists of Caithness Glass, Scotland. Each decanter is individually numbered and has
been created to reflect images of the traditional Bowmore bottle. The individual oak presentation case has been hand made by the Master Cabinet Makers of Charles Kirkby & Sons, Sheffield, England. Their world renowned skills have ensured that this extremely rare whisky has a final resting place worthy
of such a unique pedigree.


Only 306 limited edition decanters were produced, 12 of these were kept at the
distillery, and were used for tasting.

Tasting notes

Its colour is bronze with warm gold highlights.
Its body is velvety soft and smooth and amazingly
light for such a mature whisky. The nose is wave after wave of soft fruit with lighter unhurried oak and peat notes adding to the complexity. On the palate it is astonishingly fruity, due to the double wood maturation. However its true Hebridean
characteristics become more evident towards the finish. A finish which is delayed, initially very gentle and then it happensand all the warmth of Islay comes alive.



The spirit of craftmanship


Tasting cabinet at the distillery



1957 Vintage - 38 Years Old - 40.1%


1957 Distillation
38 Years Old

861 bottles released in 1996

It was on a mid-winter’s day, 14 January 1957, when this bottle of Bowmore began its special journey to maturation. New distilled spirit was poured into oak casks, much the same as any other day at Bowmore Distillery. However, the spirit within casks numbered 216-220 was to become special.

Bowmore’s Distillery Manager nurtured and monitored this spirit through the years, as with all casks of Bowmore, waiting for the day when he knew the whisky was at its prime. Over time, the spirit rested quietly in the No.1 Vaults of Bowmore Distillery, breathing in the fresh sea air and developing its unique Bowmore personality.

Ten, twenty, thirty years passed by and still the spirit in those five casks wished to slumber. Its brothers had long since matured. The Distillery Manager knew that something unique was developing in the casks and kept a careful vigil over them. However, in its thirty eighth year, the spirit was found sitting just above the critical 40% alcoholic volume strength for ScotchWhisky and so he moved with haste to have the whisky bottled. If he had waited a moment longer, the whisky would have become extinct, and a piece of history wiped out forever.

The precious spirit was soon bottled and placed in this handmade oak presentation case, carefully crafted by the Master Cabinet Makers of Charles Kirkby & Sons, Sheffield, England.

This unique autumnal coloured Bowmore should be given time in the glass to open up, time for the Bowmore character to release itself. To preserve every last drop of character in this fine whisky, we decided not to chill filter it. Should water be added, it may alter in appearance, acquiring a natural soft haze.

As one of only 861 bottles ever produced, this bottle of Bowmore 1957, aged Thirty Eight Years, is a true gem in the Bowmore family.

Tasting notes

The colour of autumn leaves, this full bodied malt whisky which had gained great character from its 'Big Sleep' on Islay. Forest wood and sweet fruits are suggested on nosing, with just a trace of peat. Its Islay character is more evident on the palate as is the sea salt, which clings to the lips. Layers of caramel, soft fruit and dried apples are there. Give this exquisite malt whisky time to open up and enjoy the gentle, elegant finish that seemingly goes on forever - an incredible Islay experience.



1957 Vintage - 54 Years Old - 42.1%




1957 Distillation
54 Years Old

12 bottles released in 2012

The oldest Bowmore ever and the oldest Islay Single Malt
ever released to the public!

In October 2012 we released our oldest ever expression,
the exceptionally rare Bowmore 1957, 54 Years Old.
Not only is this the oldest whisky we have ever released,
it is also the oldest Islay Single Malt ever released. Distilled in 1957 and bottled in 2011, this 54-year-old marvel has been lying in wait in the finest oak for more than half a century in
our legendary No.1 Vaults, the oldest maturation warehouse
in all of Scotland.

With only 12 bottles in existence in the world, Bowmore 1957
is the oldest and rarest ever Bowmore, ensuring that this will become one of the most sought-after bottlings of one of the world’s most collectible Single Malt Scotch Whiskies.

Many generations have been the custodians of Bowmore 1957’s long journey from cask to bottle. Beginning in 1779
when Bowmore was established through to the present day, our distillery team has served as guardians of Bowmore’s whisky-making traditions and its inventory, safeguarding them so that future generations can continue to experience the unique spirit that is Bowmore. Bowmore 1957 was as much nurtured by the people as it was by its cask and the ancient distillery walls.

A collection of 1957 casks were bottled in 1995 but one in particular was held back because it was a bit more special,
a bit more exceptional than the rest.  Since 1995, the whisky
in that cask has been examined every six months to check
the quality, the taste, the developments and changes the
spirit was taking on its aging voyage. It was also closely watched to see how long the whisky could mature without losing Bowmore’s signature trait of a sweet/smoky balance.




Cask maturation

This 54-year-old Bowmore 1957 is a symphony of aromas
and flavours never before experienced. After distillation in 1957, the new spirit was placed into a second fill sherry cask (where it spent 43 years) and then in 2000 was moved into a second fill bourbon cask.

Tasting notes

At first breath, an elixir of blueberries and wild figs with mellow almonds, tropical fruit and rich oaky overtones hits the nose. The palate reveals layer upon layer
of sweet and refined ocean tastes with soft blueberries, cassis and figs, sea salt and fresh eucalyptus. Next, a wisp of teasing smoke and traces of dark chocolate fuse with notes of grapefruit and juicy oak, carried along by a warming marine breeze. This sensory journey ends with a long and whispering finish of cassis, bergamot and star anise. Simply magical!


1961 Vintage - 50 Years Old - 40.7%


1961 Distillation
50 Years Old
1st release (2013)

200 bottles released: 50 per year will become available each year between 2013 and 2016.

Bowmore, Islay’s first Single Malt Scotch Whisky, is launching its 2013 expression – the Bowmore 50 Year Old - as part of an exquisite and extremely limited range which has included other releases such as the 1957 and ‘Eclipse’.

The Bowmore 50 year old (1961) is a work of true craftsmanship utilising the finest Scottish materials. The collector, for the sum of £16,000, will acquire a bottle which has been hand-blown by renowned glass sculpting studio Glasstorm, while the neck collars and cork tops of the bottles have been beautifully made by Fattorini Silversmiths. To complete the piece, the bottle will be housed within handmade cabinets which have been crafted in Scottish Elmwood by master carpenter Peter Toaig.

Crafted to perfection

Distilled one very cold day in December 1961 and laid down in two ex-bourbon hogshead casks, our Bowmore 50 Years Old has spent half a century maturing in Bowmore’s legendary No. 1 Vaults. Today, just 200 bottles of this truly exceptional single malt remain – 50 of which will be released each year between 2013 and 2016. Bowmore 1961 is a celebration of not just one mastercraft but many, starting with the time-honoured skills of our small distillery team that cold winter’s day on Islay.


1961 Distillation
50 Years Old
2nd release (2014)

Eddie MacAffer, Bowmore’s Master Distiller, said: "The second release of this 50 year old Bowmore reminds us of yet another wonderful example of the older whiskies that the Distillery has matured in our No. 1 Vaults warehouse, right on the shores of Loch Indaal. This rare whisky was slowly and expertly distilled using the old coal-fired stills used in Bowmore at that time and was then filled into ex-bourbon hogshead casks and carefully stored away in the No 1 Vaults. Those that get to taste the results of all that dedication and care, applied since 1961, should feel extremely privileged."


Tasting notes

On the eye warm honey gold. Breathe in sweet almond frangipane in coconut milk, the fruitiness of apricots and crystallised orange, together with hints of black truffles and tea tree oil. Sip bursts of ripe fruit – figs, fleshy papaya, pomegranate and pineapple – intermingled with black truffles and gentle smoke. Savour the evolving finish of almond cake and caramelised pears interwoven with subtle peat oils.

    1961 Distillation
50 Years Old
3rd release (2015)

200 bottles released: 50 per year will become available each year between 2013 and 2016.

An exceptional release from Bowmore – distilled in December 1961, this whisky was aged for 50 years in a pair of ex-bourbon hogsheads.

The bottle is hand-blown by Glasstorm, the burr elm display cabinet handcrafted by Peter Toaig and the silver neck stopper and collar fashioned by Thomas Fattorini. An incredible Islay malt.

    1961 Distillation
50 Years Old
4th release (2016)

To mark Master Distiller Eddie Macaffer's 50th year at Bowmore, for a limited time only you can now purchase Bowmore 50 Year Old 1961 at the distillery visitor centre. Crafted by a team of passionate distillers, when you purchase a bottle of 50 Year Old we will take you on a VIP Craftman's Tour where you can experience the indescribable atmosphere of the legendary No.1 Vaults. Eddie will share some of his favourite stories of the men that crafted this very whisky and taught him the secret to creating Bowmore's signature balance.

To complete this journey of discovery, Eddie and Distillery Manager David Turner will gift a signed bottle of 15 year old Bowmore Darkest.

    Crafted to perfection, the final 50 bottles
of our treasured Bowmore 50 Year Old
were released in 2016

750 ml 40% alc.vol.





1964 Vintage - 35 Years Old - 42.1%




1964 Distillation
35 Years Old

99 bottles released in 1999
with sample 5cl miniature

The incredible story

Introducing the magnificent Bowmore 1964... one of the rarest and finest Single Malt Scotch Whiskies ever to be released onto the U.K. market. It's a 35 year old of ethereal quality from a single exceptional cask.

A mere 99 bottles were produced, 4 have been retained as Bowmore museum stock and the remaining 95 were only available through Oddbins. Each bottle has been individually numbered and signed by Distillery Manager, Islay Campbell, and was accompanied by a 5cl sample miniature.

Give this exquisite malt whisky time to open up and enjoy the gentle, elegant finish that seemingly goes on forever - an incredible Islay experience.


1964 Vintage - 46 Years Old - 42.9%

    1964 Distillation
46 Years Old
Fino cask matured

72 bottles released in 2011

This Bowmore 1964 encapsulates the fresh, crisp and cooling coastal atmosphere of Islay. Aged for nearly
half a century, the whisky's home was a specially selected North American bourbon cask followed by a Fino Sherry cask, during which the characteristics of the whisky have evolved and refined to create a teasingly complex and elegant balance, enhancing the top note of fresh fruits
and gentle sea-salt, lengthening and cooling the palate and leaving a beautifully elegant finish.


Tasting notes

On the eye sunset gold. Breathe in ripe peach water, floral rose water and just a wisp of smoking barley. Sip lusciously ripe peaches, but balanced by a more acidic note - juicy blood oranges or sharp pink grapefruit. Savour wood with coconut creams and sweetness, leading to a finish of gentle peat fires glowing in the dusk.


1965 Vintage - 42 Years Old - 43.6%


1965 Distillation
42 Years Old
Cask 811

57 bottles released in 2008
(Duty Free only)

Defined as an Islay malt – a malt classification
all to itself given the famous and challenging nature of Islay malts characterised by smoky, marine aromas and palate. Golden honey in appearance it has a rush of fruity and floral
aromas which work in perfect harmony with delicately smoked oak chips and a long and luxurious finish.

This is the 1st time since the Queen came to visit
in the 80’s that Morrison Bowmore have brewed
a single malt which is matured in bourbon with
a percentage in Oloroso sherry casks.
The 700 ml bottle of honey coloured Scotch
Whisky - priced at £6.000 - was available for sale exclusively at London Heathrow Airport.


1965 Vintage - 52 Years Old - 42.0%



1965 Distillation
52 Years Old
Oloroso Sherry cask

232 bottles released in 2018

Matured for 52 years, this is the fourth edition from the Bowmore 50-Year-Old Vaults Series. The liquid in this remarkably rare limited-edition bottling was some of the first to pass through Bowmore’s then-new steam heated stills in 1965.
The extended maturation period has created a rare and refined whisky with the perfect blend of complexity and elegance, exemplifying Bowmore’s history spent perfecting the art of whisky maturation. This expression is a rich reward for those who value the importance of savouring time.

    Distilled in 1965 and matured for 52 years in a single oloroso Sherry cask in one of Bowmore’s island warehouses, the whisky is described as being ‘one of the most highly sought after among collectors’.

Bottled at a cask strength of 42% abv, the whisky is described as having notes of ‘fragrant fruits, sweet bees wax and intense dark chocolate’, with a ‘touch of jasmine, dried fruit and apricots’.

    Tasting notes

On The Eye: Dark amber.

Breathe In: Fragrant fruits, sweet beeswax and intense dark chocolate.

Sip: Burnt heather and fresh spring flower.

Savour: A touch of jasmine, dried fruit and apricots. Best savoured neat.


David Turner, Bowmore Distillery Manager, comments: "This is the third Bowmore release under my tenancy and is certainly one of the most remarkable whiskies we have produced during my time here."

"Bowmore 1965 demonstrates the rewards of our meticulous ageing process and showcases the quality of whiskies coming from our talented and dedicated distillery team."

"I have always been incredibly passionate about whisky and I have absolutely no doubt that the latest addition in our 50-year-old Vaults series is sure to obtain legendary status among collectors and whisky enthusiasts alike."


1966 Vintage - 50 Years Old - 41.5%



1966 Distillation
50 Years Old
Bourbon Hogshead 5675

74 bottles released in 2017

The whisky was distilled in the same year that the Islay distillery first officially bottled Bowmore as a single malt, and it also marks the year that former Bowmore manager Eddie MacAffer joined the distillery.

It is said to have ‘unlocked the exotic fruit tastes distinctive of 1960s Bowmore whiskies’, including flavours of lychee, pineapple and watermelon, as well as light floral notes.

Bowmore 1966 is packaged in a handmade crystal decanter, with sterling silver decoration, housed in a Scottish oak cabinet containing five silver tree rings depicting the five decades of the single malt’s maturation.

Tasting notes

This exceptional expression
has been aged for 50 years in
a single ex-bourbon hogshead
cask, developing a complex
flavor and beautiful golden
amber hue.
On the nose, Bowmore 1966 50
Year Old offers elegant bursts
of lychee, pineapple, and
watermelon, developing into
light floral notes and a dry
finish on the palate. It is
perfectly balanced with a
silky whisper of smooth syrup.


David Turner, Bowmore
Distillery Manager, comments:

“To this day Eddie MacAffer is
renowned at the Bowmore
distillery for his passion and
knowledge, which he so
proudly showcased
throughout his 50 years
at the distillery.

I am honored to celebrate
such a pivotal year in
Bowmore’s history and launch
this incredible whisky, which
was not only nurtured by Eddie
himself but also created the
very year Eddie joined us.

The Bowmore 1966 50 Year Old
demonstrates the rewards of
our meticulous aging process
and proves the unparalleled
quality of the whiskies coming
from our passionate and
dedicated distillery team.

This single malt whisky is set to
be treasured among Bowmore
fans and will undoubtedly
build upon Bowmore’s
legendary collectors status.”






Distilled in 1966
Bourbon Hogshead 5675

74 bottles released in 2017

750 ml 41.5% alc.vol. (USA)


1967 Vintage - 40 Years Old - 44.1%




1967 Distillation
40 Years Old

Bourbon Cask 4538

Distilled 20.10.1967
Bottled 05.06.2008

39 bottles released at 900ml + 2 x 50ml
Exclusive for the Bowmore Distillery shop

This extremely rare whisky cask nummer 4538
has spent his whole forty years quietly maturing
in the dark vaults of Bowmore.


Tasting notes

The result is quite simply stunning:
golden barley in colour with lush aromas
of Gallia melon, papaya and peat charred
barley suggar. On the palate a medley
of exotic fruits and sugar cane syrup is
beautifully balanced with a hint of smoke
and Atlantic sea salt.
The finish is surprisingly light, subtle
but exquisitely complex.







1969 Vintage - 40 Years Old - 44.8%



1969 Distillation
40 Years Old
Bourbon Cask 2161

53 bottles released in 2010

Released at the end of 2010, Bowmore have really pulled
all the stops out for this 40 year old 1969 - a specially
selected American bourbon cask. The bottles are hand-blown and sculpted with molten glass, topped with solid silver and
come on a solid slate plinth.

Just 53 bottles of the limited edition Bowmore 40 Years Old
will be released for sale worldwide.
Priced at £6,500 per bottle, this is the ultimate luxury gift
for the Single Malt whisky connoisseur.


Hand-crafted to perfection

One of our rarest single malts, only 53 bottles of Bowmore
40 Years Old were ever created. Hand-crafted to perfection,
this remarkable spirit had been maturing in a single, specially selected American bourbon cask since 29th March 1969 and
is presented in an individually hand-blown and sculpted bottle, adorned with a hand-engraved solid silver neck collar.

Tasting notes

On the nose, Bowmore 40 Years Old is smoked oak, sweet vanilla cream, poached pears and gentle earthy peatiness.
The palate reveals wood spice, orange peel, fresh pink grapefruit and sweet pear, with the mild influence of peat smoke, bringing balance to the sweet and fruity characteristics.



1969 Vintage - 50 Years Old - 46.9%



1969 Distillation
50 Years Old

339 bottles released in october 2021

Bowmore has revealed the 'ultimate' rare
whisky collection for 2022, including this
bottling priced at £35,000

The single malt was matured in American
oak ex-Bourbon barrels and hogsheads.

Tasting notes include fragrant and floral
aromas, with citrus and sweetness.



1972 Vintage - 34 Years Old - 48.4%



1972 Distillation
34 Years Old
100th Anniversary of
Globus Switzerland

Distilled 16.10.1972
Bottled 03.08.2007
100 bottles released in 2007

This rare Bowmore was bottled exlusively for the
Swiss retail chain Globus for their 100th Anniversary

    "1972 Limited Edition. Hand selected from Bowmore's
No 1 vault. This exclusive example of the distillers art
has been hand bottled to celebrate the
100th anniversary of Globus."



Tasting notes

Colour: Old gold.
Nose: Very sweet and smooth, on juicy malt, tropical fruits (papaya and passion fruits), grape juice and some old peat smoke.
Taste: Peaty, smoky, salty, maritime, sweet and sugary, on melon, water melon and passion fruits.
The finish is smooth, with a hint of dryness, on sweet fruitiness, salt and peat smoke.
General Impression: A most pleasant, juicy, and sweet Bowmore, as elegant as the decanter which contains the precious liquid.


1973 Vintage - 43 Years Old - 43.2%


1973 Distillation
43 Years Old
Travel Retail Range

Distilled 10/05/1973
Bottled 02/06/2016
Limited Release Selected by hand
Cask nos. 3883-3888
This bottle is Hong Kong Duty Not Paid

Carefully nurtured in Bourbon Hogsheads
for over four decades
within the Legendary Bowmore No.1 Vaults, the
World's oldest Scotch maturation warehouse





1980 Vintage - Released 2004 - 52.6%


1980 Distillation
Distilled 19.08.1980
Bottled 05.07.2004

236 bottles released in 2004

Cask 5777 was filled during
the visit of Her Majesty Queen
Elisabeth II to the distillery,
19th August 1980.

In luxe presentation case
accompanied by a copper and
brass mounted pot still glass decanter.


Aged 27 Years - Timeless - 52.7%

    Aged 27 Years
Timeless Series

Distilled 1992 Bottled 2020

3000 bottles released in 2020

The Timeless series is a biennial release of rare Bowmore single malts that are specially selected by our master blendee for their exquisite quality and representation of the Timeless Bowmore house style of tropical fruit, sea salt and smoke.

    Tasting notes

Colour: Auburn

Nose: Fruity cooked plums and prune jam. Corinth raisins and sultana notes with a strong Oloroso influence. Toffee and maple syrup, liquorice, grilled orange peel and~smoked seaweed.

Taste: Sweet with chestnut honey and strong bees wax, fresh leather and Montecristo cigar tobacco, roasted coffee beans and dark chocolate with a hint of oak tannins.

Finish: The finish is long with scented burnt wood notes, dry fruits and a touch of frankincense.







Aged 31 Years - Timeless - 45.4%

    Aged 31 Years
1988 Vintage
Timeless Series

Distilled 1988 Bottled 2020

3000 bottles released in 2020

The Timeless series is a biennial release of rare Bowmore single malts that are specially selected by our master blender for their exquisite quality and representation of the Timeless Bowmore house style of tropical fruit, sea salt and smoke.






Aged 30 Years - Bottled 2020 - 45.3%

    Aged 30 Years Annual Release
Distilled 1989 Bottled 2020

2580 bottles released in 2020

The first batch in a new annual edition
Matured in Sherry Hogsheads
& Bourbon Barrels


    A whisky definitively shaped by me

Distilled in 1989, this rare single malt whisky has been carefully nurtured for three decades in our finest Sherry hogsheads and Bourbon barrels.

Bottled at a cask strength of 45.3%, this 30-Year-Old is a celebration of Bowmore’s rich fruity and subtly smoky style. With only 2580 bottles available in 2020, Bowmore 30-Year-Old inspired by the terrain that surrounds the Bowmore Distillery and the legendary landscape that defines our whisky. Capturing the art of time, this whisky takes cues from the detailed markings on driftwood and the refined polish of sea glass, reflecting its eternal connection with Islay.


    Tasting Notes

Colour: Burnished gold

Nose: Heather honey, bananas and peaches, with pineapple, vanilla and butterscotch

Taste: Tropical fruits with honey sweetness, subtle peat smoke and hints of eucalyptus

Finish: Mouth warming, with ripe fruits lingering on the tongue






Aged 40 Years - Bottled 2019 - 48.7%



Aged 40 Years Annual Release
Distilled 1978 Bottled 2019

The second in the collection of limited
edition aged and rare vintages

161 bottles released in 2021

Inspired by the Bowmore Distillery's seafront
location, this beautiful single malt encompasses
the colours and textures of Islay.

Tasting notes

Rich in aromas of honey, treacle and exotic fruits
combined with flavours of chocolate and pipe
tobacco, this 40 Year Old has a lingering and
luxurious finish.

A limited run will be available globally.



  Updated 28-12-2021


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