As the SMWS approaches its 35th anniversary, we’ve given our iconic green bottle a colourful makeover

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Welcome to the new look SMWS bottle, which blends its heritage with additional features to help you discover what delights lie within.

As it’s our first change to the bottle in almost a decade, we wanted to explain the new look and how the redesign reflects what makes The Scotch Malt Whisky Society unique.


The most obvious change with the new bottle is the introduction of 12 different colours, in the caps, in a strip on the label itself and in the age statement. Each colour conforms to one of the Society’s unique 12 flavour profiles, from Young & Sprightly through to Old & Dignified, which we introduced to help whisky lovers navigate the hundreds of bottlings we release each year. By defining whisky more by aromas than by region, we want to make it easier to focus on the flavours.


The Vaults in Leith still takes pride at the heart of the Society’s modernised logo. The spiritual home of the SMWS dates back to the 18th century and is one of Scotland’s oldest commercial premises. We’ve emphasised the shape of the bottle in the building as a tribute to its history as a warehouse for the drinks trade and long-term home of the Society.


We love to give every bottle its own name based on its essential flavours and characteristics, bringing its personality to the fore as only the Society does.


The mysteries of what’s in store when you break open the coloured seal are revealed in a succinct Tasting Note, written by the members of the secretive Tasting Panel. There’s always a more detailed Tasting Note available online on the First Friday Outturn every month.


The Society’s unique code for every single cask bottling remains fundamental on the label. For the uninitiated, the first number represents the distillery the whisky is from and the second represents the number of single casks that have been bottled from that distillery. The number is growing all the time.

ScotchMWS_NewBottles_DSC6995 copyOUTTURN

Unique and limited, SMWS whisky is pure, undiluted, unadulterated cask strength whisky, and each bottle is drawn directly from a single cask. Each cask may only yield a few hundred bottles or much less – and once it’s gone, it’s gone forever.

label close up horizontalTHE AGE

One of the biggest changes on our new design is making sure the age is and always will be up front. You might notice some unfamiliar ages, because the Tasting Panel ensures we bottle when the whisky itself is ready, not according to when time dictates it’s ready.


We know you appreciate being able to know as much about your single cask bottling as possible, so the details here will always include the precise date this precious one-of-a-kind liquid was created.


The previous contents of a cask, and the number of times it was used, can tell you a lot about what the whisky will taste like. Society bottles carry the cask type on every bottle.


Another useful signpost for newcomers to the green bottle is an indication of the whisky’s origin, without specific reference to its distillery .


The Society’s cask strength whiskies are undiluted for your drinking pleasure, and are sure to pack more of a punch than your average single malt.