The Whisky Exchange “How do you make Johnnie Walker Ghost & Rare?” – Scotch Whisky News

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The Whisky Exchange 

Imagine you were asked to take one of the world’s most famous blended whiskies and create a limited edition that paid homage to one of the world’s most revered lost distilleries. Where would you start? How would you do it justice? And how many times would you wake up in the middle of the night in a cold sweat?

It all sounds impossibly daunting, unless, in a masterpiece of nominative determinism, your name is Beveridge, Jim Beveridge, and you’ve spent almost 40 years immersed in the world of whisky making. Here, Johnnie Walker’s talented master blender tells us about how he crafted the latest in the Ghost Rare series: the magnificent Johnnie Walker Blue Label Ghost Rare Port Ellen

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Did you have a clear idea of what the finished whisky would be when you started, or is it a more experimental process?

I think it is a bit of both. You’re dealing with rare whiskies – there’s not much of them, there’s not much choice. That’s the reality of it. But you take what you’ve got and say ‘how am I going to express those flavours?’ That’s very much around having a sense of what you want the blend to be like, and then using what you’ve got in a particular direction.

The preparation for that point is to understand the whiskies themselves, and then from that you begin to think, okay, how am I going to use them to create this flavour and style that I’m looking for?

The blend style for Johnnie Walker Ghost Rare: Port Ellen is quite different to Blue Label, and that’s deliberate. The idea of the blend is to showcase the individual whiskies, which is not the purpose of Blue Label – Blue Label is more a complete picture, the profusion of flavour that comes from complexity.

Do you have access to all the remaining Port Ellen stock, or were you given specific casks?

For this blend I had freedom to choose. We obviously have a deep understanding of the stock available, and from that we knew which ones we wanted to use for the blend.

How do you approach creating a blend like this?

There are some basic rules. One is about the balance of flavours, so you assess the whiskies first – and I think it’s fair to say with Port Ellen that you know that its flavour is going to come in at the end. So in the thinking you know you’re creating something that will be complemented by the smokiness of Port Ellen, that’s really where it starts from.

So then you start thinking about the flavours of the malts; the sum of all those flavours and the best ways to express them individually. The big part of the puzzle is about the balance of these flavours, this idea of the light and accessible sweetness versus the more intense fruitiness that comes with the individual malts. So one of the big decisions is – how important is that balance?

Having worked out that balance is a bit of a watershed. Once that’s been solved you’ve essentially got the core essence of the blend and you’re then adding top notes to it, to bring in additional flavour without compromising the balance that was created.

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How much Port Ellen went into the blend?

Anyone who knows and understands smokiness in blends knows that you don’t need a lot of smoke in there to have that overt smokiness, The amount of Port Ellen we added to this blend is in that place – the level you need to add to a blend to make it smoky.

How long did it take you to go from start to finish?

A project like this can take quite a long time, there are a lot of conversations that go around it. The first week’ll be spent just basically pulling things together and seeing what the options are, then after that – I’ll go back to this point around the watershed moment about the balance – there’s a lot of iterative work around getting to that watershed.

That can take days, it can take weeks, depends where you are with it – sometimes it means not being comfortable with what you’ve got and getting other expressions of those malts brought in. If you’ve got an idea set of malts, it can take a couple of weeks, if you’re needing to re-sample and reassess it can take much longer.

How did it compare to creating the Ghost Rare: Brora edition?

In a way the challenge here was that because it was going to be called Port Ellen, the expectation was that it was going to be smoky – so it was then around how we make that smokiness work in a blend style that emulates that of the Brora. The styles are connected, it’s like a family: these are individual expressions trying to showcase the malts that you find in Blue Label, and to do that we take a lighter more accessible approach.

Ghost Rare: Port Ellen is memorably light and fruity – is that something that will come as a surprise to fans of the range? 

It was deliberate – we lead with sweetness and layer the fruit on top of that, using that sweetness to bring out the flavours of those individual malts. The lighter style helps to express that fruitiness – that estery tropical fruit aspect that comes through – and using the sweet vanilla flavours to bring that out is an important part of it.

Would you hope that Ghost Rare: Port Ellen will be drunk by people who’ve never tried Port Ellen before? How would you like people to approach it for the first time?

I think at the end of the day my target is the blend, and in a way Port Ellen is part of the story of the blend, rather than this is the story of Port Ellen. Of course, as part of the story is that Port Ellen’s in there, clearly you need to reflect the flavour you’d expect from Port Ellen. If you turn that angle it on its head, then this is an expression of Port Ellen in a different way – you’ve never really experienced Port Ellen like this.

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/12/the-whisky-exchange-how-do-you-make-johnnie-walker-ghost-rare-scotch-whisky-news/

GlenAllachie Single Casks Batch #1 at The Whisky Barrel – Scotch Whisky News

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GlenAllachie Single Casks Batch #1

Exclusive for the United Kingdom market. Batch #1 from Bill Walker’s GlenAllachie distillery consists of eight casks including Sherry, Port and Bourbon wood.

Glenallachie Distillery is a Speyside distillery sitting on the eastern edge of Ben Rinnes mountain where it is rather exposed to the elements and is often to be see sitting within the snowline. A modern building and its architect William Delmé-Evans created a distillery which is rather pleasing on the eye. Glenallachie was commissioned in 1967 with two stills which increased to four in 1989 in order to meet blenders ever increasing demand for Glenallachie malt whisky. Whilst official releases are few independent releases are more numerous with those from Signatory Vintage and Cadenheads proving popular.

Shop – GlenAllachie Single Casks Batch #1

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/12/glenallachie-single-casks-batch-1-at-the-whisky-barrel-scotch-whisky-news/

Mossburn Whisky Tasting December 8th, 2018 at the Whisky Shop #SFO – Scotch Whisky News

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Saturday, December 8th, 2-5 PM:

Scotch Tasting: Mossburn 

Expand your whisky knowledge at our expert-presented traditional whisky tasting, featuring Scotland independent bottlers Mossburn.

The Mossburn signature line is a masterfully blended whisky, double-matured in three different cask woods to create rich and smokey flavors. In addition to masterful blenders Mossburn is also a discerning bottler of less commonly seen and notable whiskies, including limited-edition releases from select Highland and Speyside distilleries like Blair Athol, Ardmore and Craigellachie to name a few.

We’ll be pouring a variety of new and rare Mossburn releases, with whisky experts present for all your whisky questions.

More Details RSVP

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/12/mossburn-whisky-tasting-december-8th-2018-at-the-whisky-shop-sfo-scotch-whisky-news/

Deanston debuts alongside The Three Drinkers on Amazon Prime – Scotch Whisky News

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Deanston debuts alongside The Three Drinkers on Amazon Prime 

Deanston distillery is set to hit small screens in a brand new series on Amazon Prime called ‘The Three Drinkers’, with the highland single malt launching the first episode of the series, which will premiere on Monday 26th November. This four-part series explores the enigmatic world of Scotch Whisky, with the three presenters travelling across Scotland to take a look behind the scenes of some of our favourite drams.

Presented by a trio of wine and spirits experts, Colin Hampden-White, Helena Nicklin and Aidy Smith, the intrepid explorers uncover various finds on their travels to share with viewers, providing a fun and educational insight into whisky for newcomers and aficionados alike.

Deanston village, the home of the distillery has been industrious since its original inception as a cotton mill back in 1785. It then underwent a period of reinvention and was transformed into a whisky distillery in 1967, that industrious and innovative spirit has continued through the centuries to present day. The distillery’s progressive nature was evident from the very beginning when it used the water from the neighbouring River Teith to generate its own energy, which it still produces today.

In the first episode Deanston’s lead blender and widely respected whisky expert, Dr Kirsty McCallum, discusses the distinctive and complex development of the distillery’s most original core range expression – Deanston Organic.

Commenting on Deanston’s organic single malt, Dr Kirsty McCallum, Lead Blender at Deanston, said: “We are really proud of our founders’ entrepreneurial spirit, and we keep that alive by coming up with innovative ideas that bring something different to the ever-growing Scotch Whisky market. 

“Our organic expression has been developed over many years with a lot of trial and error to find what works best, like ageing in virgin oak casks for example. Being able to say that we are producing a 100% organic whisky in a distillery that is so in tune with its surroundings is a fantastic achievement, that we couldn’t have accomplished without the passion and dedication that is embedded in Deanston’s history, and of course practiced by the whole team today.”

Recently graded at gold level in Green Business Tourism Scheme, Deanston continues to reduce its environmental impact through the use of locally sourced ingredients, energy, water and waste reduction as well as being fully self-sufficient for electricity needs through two original hydro-powered generators designed by Aston Martin’s David Brown.

Full of heritage, Deanston has secured many accolades for its spirit over the years, from industry gongs to the big screen. It was chosen as the perfect filming location for Ken Loach’s Hollywood movie, ‘Angels Share’ in 2012 and also featured in global TV phenomenon, Outlander in 2016.

Oliver Stuart, Global Marketing Manager, Distell Malts, said: “The Three Drinkers have created an exciting new travelogue with a twist – we are delighted to be involved with the series and the team behind it. 

“We are all shifting to watching programmes and media on-demand. This innovative new series aims to make whisky relevant to new audiences and Amazon Prime provides a new platform for Deanston to be highlighted to consumers in key markets such as the UK and US. 

“Deanston is the perfect fit for the programme, as not only do we produce some really interesting products like our 15 year old organic, but stylistically we are also very accessible for newcomers to the world of single malt whisky. The light, sweet notes that come through on all of the range are delicate on the palate, offering a gentle introduction for those less experienced, but also something a little bit different for those more familiar with single malt whisky.”

To find out more, please visit www.deanstonmalt.com

Notes 

About Distell

  • Distell is Africa’s leading producer of wines, spirits, ciders, scotch whisky and ready-to-drinks (RTDs) with a portfolio of close on 100 brands.
  • Within the portfolio, Distell owns four single malts and a number of scotch brands produced across three distillery sites.
  • The three distilleries include: Bunnahabhain on the Isle of Islay; Deanston in Doune, Perthshire and Tobermory based on the Isle of Mull.
  • With a global network of offices and distribution partners, the company employs nearly 5000 people worldwide and has an annual turnover of R14.2 billion. (£1.09 billion)
  • In Scotland, the company’s operations are based in East Kilbride where it has a bottling hall, with blending and warehousing facilities at Airdrie, both near Glasgow.
  • Distell is the 2015 “Distiller of the Year” award winner at the International Wine and Spirit Competition.

For more visit: www.distell.co.za

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/12/deanston-debuts-alongside-the-three-drinkers-on-amazon-prime-scotch-whisky-news/

BILLY LEIGHTON JOINS THE WHISKY MAGAZINE HALL OF FAME – Irish Whiskey News

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 BILLY LEIGHTON JOINS THE WHISKY MAGAZINE HALL OF FAME

Billy Leighton, Master Blender at Midleton distillery, has been inducted into the Whisky Magazine Hall of Fame in a special ceremony at The Dean Hotel, Dublin. Billy was bestowed the great honour in recognition of his 42 years in the industry and contribution to the growth of the Irish whiskey category with Irish Distillers.

The Icons of Whiskey Ireland aim to recognise the diversity and passion within the Irish whiskey industry today. The awards are presented by Rob Allanson, Editor of Whisky Magazine who said: “Billy Leighton is an Irish whiskey legend. His contribution to the revival of single pot still whiskey has re-shaped the Irish whiskey landscape and whiskey fans around the world owe him a debt of gratitude. On behalf of Whisky Magazine, I’m delighted to welcome Billy into the Hall of Fame and look forward to seeing what he’s got up his sleeve next.”

With almost a decade of experience as Master Blender behind him, Billy has diligently managed the mature stocks of Irish whiskey at Midleton Distillery in Co. Cork and used his logistical nous to forecast future demands. Some of Billy’s finest triumphs have come in the past 10 years with the revival of the much-loved Redbreast whiskey amongst his greatest achievements. The launch of Redbreast Dream Cask in May 2018 has arguably been the crowning glory of his work with Ireland’s most famous single pot still whiskey and will be remembered as Billy’s dream whiskey.

Billy, commented: “I’m deeply honoured to join the pantheon of whiskey greats in the Whisky Magazine Hall of Fame, not least an old mentor of mine, Barry Crockett. It has been a pleasure to watch Irish whiskey regain its rightful place amongst the world’s leading spirits and I hope I’ve been able to make a contribution to this. Finally, I must thank the rest of the production team, past and present, whose dedication to craft and excellence has supported in the creation of some of the finest Irish whiskeys of all time, it’s been a pleasure and I look forward to what we can conjure up next.”

Conor McQuaid, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman at Irish Distillers, commented: “It is a pleasure to offer my congratulations to Billy Leighton upon his induction to the Whisky Magazine Hall of Fame – he has been a true inspiration to Irish Distillers and the wider whiskey world over the course of his many years of dedicated service. His commitment to crafting whiskey that is worthy of revitalising the category has inspired a whole new generation with Irish whiskey and for this we will be forever grateful. We doth our cap to Billy and raise a glass in tribute to our Master Blender.”

Irish Distillers was also honoured with a number of top accolades including Visitor Attraction of the Year and Irish Whiskey Producer of the year.

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Notes

About Irish Distillers
Irish Distillers is Ireland’s leading supplier of spirits and wines and producer of the world’s most well-known and successful Irish whiskeys. Led by Jameson, our brands are driving the global renaissance of Irish whiskey. Jameson is the world’s fastest-growing Irish whiskey, experiencing 28 years of consecutive growth and hitting sales of 7.3m cases in 2018. Our brands are exported to 130+ markets, with over 80 of those experiencing double- or triple-digit growth.Irish Distillers was formed in 1966, when a merger took place between John Power Son, John Jameson Son and Cork Distilleries Company. In 1988 Irish Distillers joined Pernod Ricard, gaining access to unprecedented levels of investment and an extensive global distribution network. Since 2012, we have invested over €250m to double our production and bottling capacity to meet global demand for our products.

We employ over 600 people across our operations in Cork and Dublin.

About Pernod Ricard
Pernod Ricard is the world’s n°2 in wines and spirits with consolidated Sales of €8,987 million in FY18. Created in 1975 by the merger of Ricard and Pernod, the Group has undergone sustained development, based on both organic growth and acquisitions: Seagram (2001), Allied Domecq (2005) and VinSprit (2008). Pernod Ricard holds one of the most prestigious brand portfolios in the sector: Absolut Vodka, Ricard pastis, Ballantine’s, Chivas Regal, Royal Salute and The Glenlivet Scotch whiskies, Jameson Irish whiskey, Martell cognac, Havana Club rum, Beefeater gin, Malibu liqueur, Mumm and Perrier-Jouët champagnes, as well Jacob’s Creek, Brancott Estate, Campo Viejo and Kenwood wines. Pernod Ricard employs a workforce of approximately 18,900 people and operates through a decentralised organisation, with 6 “Brand Companies” and 86 “Market Companies” established in each key market. Pernod Ricard is strongly committed to a sustainable development policy and encourages responsible consumption. Pernod Ricard’s strategy and ambition are based on 3 key values that guide its expansion: entrepreneurial spirit, mutual trust and a strong sense of ethics.

Pernod Ricard is listed on Euronext (Ticker: RI; ISIN code: FR0000120693) and is part of the CAC 40 index.

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/12/billy-leighton-joins-the-whisky-magazine-hall-of-fame-irish-whiskey-news/

EXPLOSIVE NEW SMOKEHEAD SHERRY BOMB – Christmas Shopping – Scotch Whisky News

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EXPLOSIVE NEW SMOKEHEAD SHERRY BOMB

Smokehead Sherry Bomb is a heavily peated Islay single malt that has been boldly blasted by sherry casks. It follows hot on the heels of Smokehead High Voltage, which was unveiled in April. Priced at £64.99, Smokehead fans will enjoy a full-bodied, 48% abv peaty whisky that’s heavily influenced by Oloroso Sherry casks to create a smoky, spicy and rich flavour.

Media Release;

UNLEASHING THE NEW LOUDER AND BOLDER SMOKEHEAD ISLAY SINGLE MALT SCOTCH WHISKY

Ian Macleod unveils the new look for Smokehead, the distiller has also revealed an intense new expression which is not for the faint hearted: Smokehead High Voltage.

Commenting on the new expression and bold new look, Iain Weir, Brand Director for Smokehead said: “Smokehead has always challenged the traditional whisky world with its unconventional look and attitude, appealing to the younger and adventurous whisky drinker. We’ve turned up the volume right across the brand. It’s not for everyone, but that’s ok”.

 “And if Smokehead is an assault on your senses, then High Voltage is an all-out attack. Louder, bolder and more intense than getting put in a headlock from an angry roadie.”

The iconic skull logo now plays a much more dominant role on the label and striking gift tin. It takes on a more evocative and free-spirited style, with a rush of smoke blowing through the head to create an element of defiance.

One thing that hasn’t changed though is its bold and award-winning taste which still takes you on a fiery rollercoaster of peat, smoke and spice with a little delicate sweetness thrown in.

Smokehead is a premium whisky, as independent, strong and single minded as the people who drink it.

‘Smokehead’ and ‘Smokehead High Voltage’ are both available through specialists and multiples worldwide. Smokehead RRP £38.99 and High Voltage RRP £54.99.

 TASTING NOTES:

‘Smokehead’ (43% ABV) 

  • The First Impression: The aroma of something powerful and fiery awaiting you. Thick, heavy woodsmoke. Rich, earthy peat. Extremes of spice and sweetness. Fresh lemon, zesty ginger, rich plum jam.
  • The Full-on Flavour: An explosion of breathtaking peppery, peaty heat, soothed by honeyed sweetness, before the smoke comes to the fore again.
  • The Finale: Exotic spices and a curious citrus tang of mandarin, both lulling you into a false sense of calm as the peat roars back to hit your senses again.

‘SmokeHead High Voltage’ (58% ABV)

  • The First Impression: Breathe it in and feel the rush of spirit hit the senses and the nose prickle. Intense peat and smoke, maritime air, porridge oats, clean vanilla and toffee.
  • The Full-on Flavour: A burn of hot spirit and the mouth fills with smoke, feeling almost thick with oiliness before softening and becoming creamier, with nutty, briny and citrus notes.
  • The Finale: The mouth is almost in shock, numb and tingling. A sweetness mixes nicely with the slowly fading smoke, leaving a salty tang.

www.smokehead.com

f: www.facebook.com/smokeheadwhisky

i: www.instagram.com/smokeheadwhisky

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NOTES

About Smokehead:

  • Smokehead is an Islay Single Malt Whisky and has been given a bold new look by Ian Macleod Distillers.
  • Originally launched in 2006, Smokehead has been labelled the wild one of Single Malt Whisky.
  • Award-winning premium whisky that has an attitude-led positioning and heavily peated taste.

About Ian Macleod Distillers:

  • Established in 1933, Ian Macleod Distillers is one of Scotland’s leading independent, family-owned distillers, blenders and bottlers.
  • Ian MacLeod Distillers is the world’s 10th largest Scotch Whisky company, producing and selling over 15 million bottles of spirits every year.

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/12/explosive-new-smokehead-sherry-bomb-christmas-shopping-scotch-whisky-news/

A First-Ever Cask Strength Whiskey from Zin Master Dave Phinney — A K&L Exclusive – American Whiskey News

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A Winemaking Legend Shows His Whiskey-Making Prowess

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Savage Cooke “Second Glance” KL Exclusive Cask Strength American Whiskey ($49.99)

Dave Phinney, the man behind such legendary wine brands as The Prisoner and Orin Swift, has branched out into the world of distilling, and we couldn’t be happier that he did. His new project, Savage Cooke, has been turning out a stream of spirits that stand among some of the best in the market. But then, we expected no less from such a visionary. This KL exclusive release, “Second Glance,” is his first cask-strength whiskey. Made in Kentucky and finished on Mare Island in California, the whiskey has a mash bill of 95% corn, 4% rye, and 1% malted barley. The juice is top-notch, but it’s on Mare Island where the real magic happens. Phinney usually finishes this whiskey in Cab barrels. At the recommendation of our NorCal Spirits Buyer, Andrew Whiteley, he used Zin and Grenache casks in this run—and the result is astounding and truly unique. Rich, unctuous, and wonderfully accented with fresh, jammy fruit, it shows remarkable clarity. Sweet, but never too sweet, it offers a seemingly unending cascade of blue and black fruit, mocha, and subtle spice. This a great whiskey to enjoy on its own, but also has a profile that will make it natural for any number of cocktails. While we’ve been more than impressed with all of the spirits from Savage Cooke, this special release of “Second Glance” really is something special. Made in limited quantities, you’ll want to lock in your bottles sooner, rather than later.

Savage Cooke “Second Glance” KL Exclusive Cask Strength American Whiskey ($49.99)

The legendary Dave Phinney delivers again. The man behind The Prisoner and Orin Swift wines has stepped into the whiskey game in a big way. He is building an extraordinary distillery on Mare Island, just west of Vallejo in an old U.S. Naval Yard that that was responsible, among other things, for building submarines and loading ships during WWII. Both of the distillery’s whiskies are finished in Dave’s wine barrels from his Napa Valley winery and have received great acclaim. We traveled to Mare Island to meet up with Master Distiller and Blender Jordan Via to put together a bespoke barrel of whiskey for KL. The result is Savage and Cooke’s first ever cask-strength release and it’s a doozy. While the OB’s from the distillery are both currently finished in Dave’s Cabernet barrels, they do have whiskey resting in other wine casks. There was no way we were going to pass up the opportunity to showcase what a whiskey can do with barrels from the world’s most famous Zinfandel producer! The Zinfandel finish showed most prominently in the Second Glance whiskey so we started there. While the 100% Zin was excellent, it needed just a touch of something else. The dark fruit and spice of the Zinfandel played perfectly with the floral and jammy flavors and lifted nature of the Grenache. Ultimately we settled on an 80% Zin, 20% Grenache blend and it’s perfect. Grab this piece of history before it’s gone. 95% corn, 4% rye, and 1% malted barley.

Andrew Whiteley | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 07, 2018

Dave Phinney’s whiskies are currently made in Kentucky, but really come to life once they reach his new distillery on Mare Island and are married with the best California has to offer. The man behind The Prisoner and Orin Swift wines knows a thing or two about wine barrels. This whiskey rested in a blend of 80% Zinfandel and 20% Grenache barrels from Dave’s Napa winery. Bottled at cask strength, it carries those flavors with remarkable clarity. The underlying heavily corn mash bill has tons of sweetness and rich buttery popcorn flavors and lifts the intense dark fruits and pepper spice of the Zinfandel to the top of the glass. This is balanced by the lighter floral tones and bright jammy flavors of the Grenache. The end result is nearly a Manhattan in itself. Just pour it on the rocks, toss in a cherry and have yourself a great cocktail without the extra sweetness of vermouth. On the palate, the bread spices really stand out and contribute to a long and intense finish. Add a little water and more chocolate and caramel flavors come to the front. Anyway you serve it, this is an extremely versatile whiskey.

Shaun Green | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 07, 2018

Now here’s something really special in the whisky world! What a great combination of cask and whisky here—the Zin barrels really add a zesty spice to a rich corn-based spirit. Full and round and with a nice sweet touch without ever being cloying; a touch of water really brings out a rich note of malt on the nose. The color seems quite intense, likely influenced a lot by the wine barrels.

Miles Philippe | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 07, 2018

I love how familiar this can come across, and yet at the same time express itself so uniquely! What I mean by that is the mostly corn base of the whiskey shows itself so nicely and freely here—round, lush, and slightly sweet. But then this becomes something so much more because of the ex-wine barrels. The color is a beautiful deep bronze with flashes of red from the wine. And the finish has a nice zing to it with a touch of dried fruit, a hint of fresh fruit, and some slight medicinal herb notes.

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/11/a-first-ever-cask-strength-whiskey-from-zin-master-dave-phinney-a-kl-exclusive-american-whiskey-news/

Kensington Wine Market Malt Messenger No. 92 by Andrew Ferguson – More KWM Casks & Loads of Whisky News You Can Use! – Whisky News

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This will be probably the second last full Malt Messenger of 2018, and it is overflowing with whisky news and tasting notes, including three more new KWM exclusive single casks.

Our second ever Amrut single cask has just arrived: one of the oldest Amrut’s ever to come to Canada. It is equal in age to the first edition of Amrut’s Greedy Angels. The Amrut 2009 KWM Jaggery Rum Cask was matured in a curious Indian rum cask (jaggery rum), and bottled at 60%. Only 180 bottles. More details below.

We also have two new KWM exclusive Shelter Point single casks! In addition to being our first ever single casks of Canadian whisky, one of them is also our first ever single cask of Rye whisky. I’m not talking “rye” in the colloquial sense (spoiler alert you can call Canadian whisky rye even if it is 100% corn), but actual 100% rye! The Shelter Point Single Malt KWM Cask and Shelter Point Rye KWM Cask are both in-store now and open for tasting. More details below.

This coming Wednesday, November 28, we are going to welcome David MacInnes Ferguson, North American Sales Manager for the Isle of Arran Distillery, to KWM for a special tasting. We will be sampling Arrans from 10-22 years of age, and possibly a peated one too. Only 6 spots left, tickets are $20. More details below.

We are passing on some very deep savings on the 2016 ($35) and 2017 ($30) editions of the Lagavulin 12 Year Cask Strength. The prices are only in effect while supplies last.

There are some amazing older whiskies to tell you about in this Malt Messenger, especially from Gordon MacPhail. On the heels of an event I hosted in Banff a couple of weeks back, Scotch on the Rockies, we have access to some very interesting older single malts, at pricing you’re likely never to see again.

First and foremost is the MacPhail’s 1949 Speyside single malt whisky. This 68 year old, probably Glenlivet or Glen Grant (Gordon Macphail won’t declare the distillery), is without question the least expensive almost 70 year old whisky you will ever see again. I hope to get my own tasting note out on this beautiful old whisky later in the week. Details below.

The MacPhail’s 1949 is far from alone when it comes to rare and old whisky in this edition of the Malt Messenger. There are also 1955 and 1952 Glen Grants, a 1974 Glenlivet, a 1968 Banff (Closed Distillery), 1968 Tomintoul and 1967 Longmorn. Details on all of them below. Some of them are in market now, others will be here in January. More details on all of these whiskies below.

We also have some old vintages of Benromach to tell you about. The Benromach 1977 arrived earlier this year, and will be followed early next year by the Benromach 1978. Possibly the most interesting is the Benromach 1976, which was originally released in 2012. We have been offered a parcel of bottles at legacy pricing, placing the 1976 at roughly 1/3 the price of the 1977 and 1978. More details on all three Benromachs below.

Continuing in the old and rare vein, we will be receiving bottles of the only ever official release of Carsebridge next week. Carsebridge is a closed Lowland Grain Distillery. We have only had 3 previous releases of whisky from the distillery in the store’s 25 years of selling whisky. Only 12 bottles of the Carsebridge 48 Year are coming to Alberta, 6 of them to KWM! More details below.

There is also the Talisker 40 Year which, having been distilled in 1978, is a dangerously tempting vintage for me. It is the oldest official bottling of Talisker ever released, with one exception. Details below.

The second last whisky to tell you about in the old malt vein is the Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1989. This partly wine cask matured 27 year old Glenmorangie is very limited, and not expected to last long. We grabbed what we could while we could. Details below.

The final old malt to tell you about in this edition is the new Bruichladdich 1990 Black Art 6.1. The 5.1, which was the first put together since Jim McEwan’s departure, was my favourite to date. I have high hopes for Adam’s second kick at the can. That is not the only new Laddie to tell you about, as we have also received some of the Port Charlotte MC:01, serendipitous. The MC:01 was supposed to be a Duty Free release, with the MRC:01 being for general retail. Long story short, they thought they shipped us the MRC but it was, in fact, the MC. So grab it while you can. The Port Charlotte MRC:01 is still expected late this year or early next.

We also have some new Japanese whiskies to tell you about and some other cool gift packs.

And last but not least, there are just 7 days until Whisky Advent! Do you know where your Kensington Wine Market 2018 Whisky Advent Calendar is?

Lots to digest in this the 92nd Malt Messenger. Enjoy…

Slàinte!

Andrew

In This Edition

  1. New Arran Tasting
  2. NEW Amrut 2009 KWM Jaggery Rum Cask
  3. TWO NEW Shelter Point KWM Exclusive Casks
  4. SAVE: On Lagavulin 12 Year Cask Strength 2016 2017
  5. Introducing: The MacPhail’s 1949 68 Year
  6. Rare, Old Collectible Gordon MacPhail Whiskies
  7. Special Offer Benromach 1976
  8. Benromach 1977 1978
  9. Introducing: Carsebridge 48 Year
  10. Introducing: Bruichladdich Black Art 6.1
  11. Serendipitous Acquisition: Port Charlotte MC:01
  12. Introducing: Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1989
  13. Introducing: Talisker 40 Year (1978)
  14. New Japanese Whiskies
  15. Introducing: That Boutique-y Gin Company Gin Advent Calendar
  16. Also in the Advent Genre
  17. One Week Until KWM Whisky Advent 2018

Andrew Ferguson

Kensington Wine Market

PS – Don’t forget you can follow me on Twitter:

@scotch_guy, Instagram: @thescotch_guy/

 or @kwmwhisky and Facebook: facebook.com/scotch.guy.1

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New Arran Tasting – This Wednesday, November 28 

With Special Guest Arran North American Sale Manager David MacInnes Ferguson

We are thrilled to be welcoming David MacInnes Ferguson (no relation) to Kensington Wine Market for a Master Class tasting on Wednesday Novemember 28, 6PM. The visit is a surprise one, but we are excited for it nonetheless. David is the North American and UK Sales manager for Arran Whisky. We are looking forward to his visit, and will be cracking open the Arran core range: 10, 14 and 18 year olds; as well as the Explorer’s Series Brodick Bay 20 Year and two new Kensington Wine Market Exclusive single casks: 21 and 22 years of age. The cost of the tasting is just $20.

 Register in-store, by phone: 403-283-8000 or online!

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Two New Shelter Point KWM Exclusive Casks 

The Selection of our First KWM Exclusive Single Casks of Canadian Whisky Involved a Precarious Helicopter Landing on the Side of Mountain…   

Evan, Curt and I were invited out to Shelter Point Distillery in September for a special visit. The purpose of the trip was to look into purchasing a cask of Shelter Point Single Malt Whisky for Kensington Wine Market, but it turned into so much more. For starters, our tour of the distillery and farm far exceeded our expectations. It is a pretty special place and well worth the visit. There are direct flights from Calgary to nearby Comox… Midway through the day at the distillery we thought we were going to settle in for a picnic nearby the beach when a helicopter started circling. Lunch and drams were to be served atop a mountain near Mount Washington on Vancouver Island. Suffice to say it was a pretty memorable experience.

During our tour we couldn’t help but notice a few sequestered barrels of rye whisky in the warehouse. Shelter Point distillery has only ever distilled BC Malt and Barley. The rye barrels were purchased from Alberta Distillers, whiskies that Shelter Point intended to bottle in the early days while it waited for its own whiskies to mature. BC’s government offers a tax break for wineries, breweries and distilleries as long as they use BC ingredients (grapes and barley). This doesn’t apply to grains or whiskies sourced out of Province. So while Shelter Point has bottled a Blended whisky composed of both malt and rye, they have never bottled a 100% rye, until now. Kensington Wine Market has selected one of Shelter Point’s rye barrels to be bottled exclusively for our shop, along with a cask of Shelter Point Single Malt. These are our first ever exclusive single casks of Canadian whisky!

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  1.  Shelter Point Rye KWM Cask – 59.6% – 9 Year – Our first ever KWM exclusive single cask of 100% rye whisky was selected by our team at Shelter Point Distillery on Vancouver Island, but it was distilled in Calgary at Alberta Distillers… Distilled in 2009 the whisky has been bottled after 9 years at 59.6%. 240 total bottles! – Andrew’s Tasting Note: “Nose: maple syrup, peanut brittle, cloves just plucked from a honey baked ham and treacle tarts; oily with loads of spice; there was a hint of dill at first but it quickly vanished; dark fruits, licorice root and fig jam; oh and glazed pork belly (seriously). Palate: big, oily, syrupy and spicy; decadent Demerara and brown sugars before bacon infused dark chocolate and crisp spices: fennel, cloves and licorice root; more cloves plucked from a honey baked ham and sweet and sour pork; silky vanilla with dates and figs are late to the party. Finish: insanely long, oily, coating and decadent with more dark fruits and soft spices; a touch of glazed pork belly. Comment: wow… this was a serendipitous discovery on visiting Shelter point with Evan and Curt in September; if it doesn’t sell out before Christmas I’ll be shocked!” – $120
  2. Shelter Point Single Malt KWM Cask – 59% – 6 Year – Our first ever KWM exclusive single cask of Canadian single malt whisky is from our friends at Shelter Point Distillery on Vancouver Island. Distilled in May 2012, Cask No. 206 was selected by the KWM team and bottled in October of this year at 6 years of age. Only 162 total bottles. – Andrew’s Tasting Note: “Nose: honeyed and fruity with juicy malt; a soft earthy minerality makes way for Jujubes and warm apple-cinnamon pie; fall grasses and faint sea breeze; orange and subtle cloves. Palate: round, juicy, fruity and warming; chewy malt, barley sugars and loads of candied citrus; the warm apple-cinnamon pie fresh from the oven is still there as are the Jujubes and honey tones; the body is smooth and creamy with soft spices; a touch of savoury maritime notes. Finish: warm, coating, decadent and fruity; the finish is long and smooth. Comment: this 6 year old Canadian single malt is lovely; it is fruity and round with some lovely layers and oils; it is a sure sign of the even greater things still to come from Shelter Point!” – $116

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SAVE on Lagavulin 12 Year Cask Strength 2016 2017 

We Got a Great Deal, and We Are Passing It On; Save $30-$35! 

The 2017 Lagavulin 12 Year Cask Strength has recently landed and is on sale from the importer. Regularly $180, it is available for a limited time for $150+gst. But it gets better: the 2016 Edition of Lagavulin 12 Year Cask Strength, bottled to mark the distillery’s 200th Anniversary, is also on sale! Regularly $185+gst, it is also available for $150 while supplies last. We can guarantee pricing on orders placed before 2PM Mountain Standard Time today. The whiskies scored 90pts and 92pts respectively from Serge on WhiskyFun.org.

  1. Lagavulin 12 Year Cask Strength 2016 200th Anniversary Edition – 57.7% – Serge’s Tasting Note: “Probably a very large batch. Lagavulin 12 is a kind of Porsche 911 of whisky, everyone loves it, for good reasons. Yes, fast and reliable. It’s to be noted that this baby is another one that celebrates the distillery’s 200th anniversary. Colour: white wine, so refill wood. No complains. Nose: I think it’s even simpler than its predecessors, but that simplicity is exactly what we’re looking for here. Bauhaus whisky? Peat smoke, tar and burnt rubber, sea spray, artichokes, and Islay mud. With water: exceptionally almondy and waxy, with a perfect tar. Mouth (neat): elementary, straight, direct, uncomplicated, and perfect. Bacon, smoked fish, bitter oranges, thyme tea, bitter almonds. I find it seriously drier than last year’s SR, but I haven’t got that one in my hands just now, so please forget about these aimless ramblings. Now, the peat is huge. With water: lemons! Finish: very long. How did you like this cigar that you just chewed? Comments: I don’t know, in a way, this baby’s akin to some young Port Ellens that we could try in the past, even if there isn’t any feeling of brown coal this time. Do they have a secret programme? Recreating PE at Lagavulin? And it’s integrally distillate-driven and mature. My preferred way and style. One of the must buys of the year, together with that perfect Kilkerran 12, remember? SGP:367 – 92 points.” $150 (While Supplies Last) – Regular $180
  2. Lagavulin 12 Year Cask Strength 2017 – 56.5% – Serge’s Tasting Note: “We’re having these every year, and every year that’s a joy. Colour: pale white wine. Nose: Lagavulin’s sweeter peat at first, then the expected sooty smoke, Islay mud, crushed barley, then perhaps a drop of sunflower or sesame oils, whiffs of hand cream, and the usual ocean breeze. Drops of mercurochrome as well, just in case. It’s the purity that’s really perfect here. With water: that wet old tweed jacket, back from Dunyvaig’s ruins while it was raining cats and dogs over the bay. Mouth (neat): lemony, peppery, ashy, and smoky perfection. I find it even more precise and concise than earlier batches. Doesn’t do a lot, but does it with utter perfection. With water: gets ashier and sootier. That feeling of having eaten some cigar ash, while the usual orange drops start to appear in the background. Finish: rather long, clean, rather on smoked oranges. We’ll have to try that one day. Comments: perhaps a slightly simpler and sweeter one, but we keep flying very high with these little 12s. SGP:457 – 90 points.” ­- $150 (While Supplies Last) – Regular $180

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Introducing: The Macphail’s 1949 68 Year 

The Best Value Nearly 70 Year Single Malt You Will Ever See Again! 

There are a lot of factors that make old whisky so expensive. Firstly, time can be cruel, with the angels greedily skimming 1-2% off a year from each and every barrel. Few single casks make it to 40 years at the bare minimum legal strength for whisky, 40%. Secondly, few people and or companies ever thought there would be demand for such old whisky, especially at the prices they now command, and accordingly they didn’t plan to keep stocks for so long. Expensive/collectible old whisky is a relatively new phenomenon, only really getting up to steam in the 21st century. Finally, and most importantly, simply leaving something in a barrel for 40, 50, 60 or more years will not guarantee that it will get better. While the best, most interesting and complex whiskies I’ve ever had have all been old ones, age and quality are not synonymous. I have had a lot of disappointing older malts and blends. Many of these disappointing older whiskies were left in the barrel too long and had lost their vitality. That is the tricky bit about ageing whisky, every barrel matures at its own pace. This is what makes Gordon MacPhail’s older whiskies so interesting. The firm has bottled the six oldest whiskies I am aware of, including a 75 year old, three 70 year olds and at least two 68 year olds (of which this is one). They are also set to bottle an 80 year old whisky in the next year… Of these truly ancient malts I have yet to have a bad or disappointing one. If anything, the most surprising thing is that all of these whiskies seemingly could have been left to mature even longer.
“Enter into the frame the MacPhail’s 1949 68 year old single cask. Very few companies have ever released single malts over 50, let alone 60 or more years. When those distilleries which have, like Glenfarclas, Dalmore and Macallan, the whiskies have been many tens of thousands of dollars a bottle, if not closer to 100 Grand. This single cask of 68 year old single malt is among the 10 oldest whiskies ever bottled, and it is inexpensive, even by Gordon MacPhail’s standards (admittedly this is very relative). The distillery is not disclosed, though I suspect it is either Glen Grant or Glenlivet (I am leaning on this one). But consider this: if they had put the distillery’s name on the bottle the whisky would have been 2-3 times the price on offer. You will never see another almost 70 year old whisky at this price ever again. We were given the opportunity to purchase bottles from one of two sister casks from 1949, and we felt this one was spectacular. I will have my own formal tasting note out shortly.

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MacPhail’s 1949 – 41.4% – 68 Year – First fill Sherry butt – Distilled: 3rd June 1949 – Bottled: 2nd August 2017 – Cask number: 2203 – Outturn. 210 bottles – Producer Tasting Note: “Aroma. Matured in the finest Sherry butt, this greatly aged whisky has developed rich fruit cake aromas with festive spice and a wisp of smoke. Taste. A sip reveals Sherry character enhanced by rich spices and underlying orange peel. Hints of liquorice lead to charred oak on the long, smooth finish.” – $10,500 – 6 of 9 Bottles already sold. We are trying to get a few more!

 

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Rare, Old Collectible Gordon MacPhail Whiskies 

A Last Chance at Some Discontinued Legendary Whisky Lines 

The following six whiskies sampled recently at Scotch on the Rockies in Banff are available for order and or purchase. This is old legacy stock from Gordon MacPhail which is in the process of rebranding. Most of these lines are being discontinued, consolidated and rebranded. The prices for whiskies like these are also expected to go up by 25-50%. Here we have a rare opportunity to purchase some legacy Gordon MacPhail stock at relatively reasonable prices:

  1. Smith’s Glenlivet 1974 – Refill American refill Sherry casks. – Producer Tasting Note: “Aroma Fragrant notes of fresh rose petals and newly cut grass. A lingering subtle sweetness follows. Taste An initial burst of chili spices with a sweetness emerging. Soft fruit influences linger and a hint of vanilla comes to the fore. Aroma with Water Fresh with a heavily fragrant nose reminiscent of freshly cut roses. A burst of vanilla and ripe soft fruits emerge. Taste with Water A peppery edge develops with a touch of aniseed. Hints of creamy butter develop. Body Medium to full. Finish Lingering.” – $1250 – Available by request, ETA January!
  2. Rare Old Banff 1966 –  45.2% – 49 Year – Refill Sherry butt. – Producer Tasting Note: “Aroma Sweet Sherry influences, stewed apple, and fig aromas complemented by zesty orange notes. A delicate herbal edge mingles with hints of fresh sea air. Taste Initially cracked black pepper tingles on the tongue, this is followed by prune, grapefruit, and red apple flavours. Crème brûlée notes enhance a sweet edge. Aroma with Water Delicate Sherry influences followed by waxy lemons, polish, and wisps of dried tobacco. Stewed fruits notes are complemented by a subtle rose petal edge. Taste with Water Cracked black pepper initially with creamy custard, milk chocolate, and rich orange marmalade flavours. A lingering charred oak edge develops. Body Medium to full. Finish Long and creamy with lingering stewed fruit flavours.” – $2100 – 6 More Bottles due in January!
  3. Rare Old Tomintoul 1968 – 45.5% – 44 Year – Refill Sherry hogsheads. – Producer Tasting Note: “Aroma Subtle Sherry influences with hints of marzipan and milk chocolate. A touch of beeswax polish develops with fresh fruit aromas: ripe banana, peach, and lemon. Taste Chili spice initially with honey, orange zest, and gooseberry flavours. These combine with a lingering menthol and peppermint edge. Aroma with Water Sweet with citrus aromas, treacle, orange, and lemon. Peppermint and tobacco notes develop with a trace of sugared almonds. Taste with Water Sweet and creamy with strawberry, raspberry, and milk chocolate. A slight nuttiness develops – almonds and brazil nuts. Body Medium. Finish Long; sweet and creamy.” – $1900 – Only 2 bottles left!
  4. Distillery Label Longmorn 1967 – 43% – 48 Year – First Fill Sherry butt. – Producer Tasting Note: “Aroma Soft and delicate with a soft sweet Sherry nose which mingles with ripe nectarine notes and hints of marzipan. Taste Initially sweet with a warming spiciness of ground black pepper. Stewed fruit and citrus flavours develop. Aroma with Water Sweet and fresh with honey and a touch of aniseed. Sherry influences remain. Taste with Water Creamy and rich with orange citrus fruit, stewed fruits, and touch of pepper. Body Medium to full. Finish Long and warming.” – $2000 – Available by request, ETA January!
  5. Rare Vintage Glen Grant  1955 – 40% – 57 Year – First fill Sherry butt. – Producer Tasting Note: “Aroma Cinnamon with rich fruitcake, rum and raisin aromas. Orange zest and charred oak notes develop with a slight peppermint edge. Taste Sweet and lightly spiced, soft fruit and brazil nut flavours develop which complement the sweet Sherry character. Aroma with Water Sherry influences remain, fruitcake, rum and raisins. Hints of coffee and aniseed develop with a touch of beeswax. Taste with Water Initially grapefruit, plum, and dark chocolate flavours. A slight cigar ash edge lingers. Body Full Bodied. Finish Long and balanced.” – $4400 – Available by request, ETA January!
  6. Rare Vintage Glen Grant 1952 – 40% – 59 Year – First fill Sherry butt and refill Sherry hogshead. – Producer Tasting Note: “Aroma Delicate Sherry notes with polished leather and ripe banana aromas. Herbal and earthy notes develop. Taste Smoky and peppery with a subtle phenolic edge. Underlying Sherry character remains with apple and pear flavours. Aroma with Water Sherry influences with beeswax and a subtle tobacco edge. Pear and apricot aromas linger. Taste with Water Peppery with cigar ash initially. Becomes fruity with stewed pear and plum flavours with a lingering creamy milk chocolate edge. Body Medium. Finish Long and smooth.” – $6000 – Available by request, ETA January!

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Special Offer: Benromach 1976 

An Archive Release at 2012 Pricing  

We featured this malt at my Scotch on the Rockies event a couple of weekends back. It is notable in that it is a 3rd the price of the Benromach 1977 and the soon to be release 1978. Granted, the latter two whiskies are at or nearer to 40 years of age, never the less, this 36 year old Benromach is a bargain in that we are able to offer it at the same price we sold it in 2012. We are placing an order tomorrow for January/February arrival.

Benromach 1976 – 46% – 36 Year – 1st Fill and Refill Sherry Hogsheads – Distiller’s Description: “Matured for many years in the finest hand selected Sherry casks, this exclusive vintage displays the elegance and sophistication of a aged Speyside Single Malt. Combing rich summer fruits and dark chocolate notes with soft malt and a hint of smoke, this complex single malt is smooth and luxurious.” – Distiller’s Tasting Note: “Nose: Creme brulee with orange and fruit cake aromas. Hints of Kiwi and figs develop. Palate: Peppery initially with orange zest and apricot flavours. A creamy milk chocolate edge with subtle nuttiness. // WITH WATER // Nose: White chocolate with hints of coconut, lemon and a subtle Sherry influence. Palate: Less spicy, with a more intense chocolate flavour. A subtle menthol and tobacco flavour develop. Body: Medium. Finish: Long and sweet.” – $1100 – Available by request, ETA January!

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Two New Vintage Benromachs 

1977 is Here and 1978 is Coming! 

Both of these vintage Benromachs were a hit at Scotch on the Rockies. The whisky is Gordon MacPhail’s legacy stock, distilled before the distillery closed in 1983. Gordon MacPhail purchased the distillery in 1993 from Diageo and set about restoring it to production, a process that took nearly 5 years. While they waited for their new make to reach maturity they bottled pre-closure stock. 20 years on from the distillery’s revival, the supplies of pre-closure Benromach are now dwindling. Moving forward they are only bottling 1 vintage a year in the vein of the 1977 and 1978.

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  1. Benromach 1977 – 56% – 39 Year – Matured in a single Refill American Hogshead – Distiller’s Tasting Note: “Pour your dram of Benromach 1977, cask number 1268, and prepare your senses to encounter an experience as rare as this gorgeous whisky. First, lift your glass to the light and appreciate the beautiful dark gold hue created by lingering for 39 years in a single Refill American Hogshead as the whisky grew and matured in character. Take a short inhalation, savouring the AROMAS WITHOUT WATER… enjoy the vibrant notes of sweet honey, apricot conserve, orange zest and butterscotch, mingling with developing hints of toasted oak and a delicate menthol edge. Now take a sip. Savour the sweetness leading to a touch of pepper on the tongue followed by notes of ripe banana and luscious passion fruit. Citrus undertones and dried tobacco mingle with toasted oak leading to a fresh menthol finish. Add A FEW DROPS OF WATER and take time to enjoy the nose as it develops… sweet, subtle coconut and exotic fruits combine with ginger and lime aromas. Now lift it to your lips and enjoy a slow sip… a smooth sweetness emerges with warm bursts of white pepper and overtones of pear, kiwi and lime. Finally, dried tobacco and a trace of toasted oak on the finish. Exquisite.” – $3000 – 1 bottle left in Alberta!
  2. Benromach 1978 – 56.3% – 40 Year – Refill Sherry Hogshead Cask 2608 – Distiller’s Tasting Note: “Pour your dram of BENROMACH 1978, cask number 2608, and prepare your senses to encounter an experience as rare as this gorgeous whisky. First, lift your glass to the light and appreciate the beautiful deep golden hue created by lingering for 40 years in a single Refill Sherry Hogshead as the whisky grew and matured in character. Take a short inhalation, appreciating the wonderful aromas without water… enjoy the rich, sweet notes of honey and vanilla, mingling with ripe fruits, tangy lime and a touch of butterscotch and fresh ginger. Now take a sip. Savour the smooth sweetness beautifully balanced by a hint of pepper. Top notes of oak mingle with succulent pear and kiwi, rich dark chocolate and dried tobacco, with lingering spices and a wisp of peat smoke on the finish. Add a few drops of water and take time to enjoy the nose as it develops… aromas of luscious raspberry and rhubarb mingle with creamy vanilla custard and vibrant lime zest followed by a subtle edge of fresh menthol. Now lift it to your lips and enjoy a slow sip… a creamy sweetness with a touch of warm pepper immediately emerges. Notes of poached summer berries and rich dark chocolate follow, leading to a subtle and lingering wisp of peat smoke on the finish. Magnificent.” – $3000 (Coming Soon) – Available by request, ETA January!

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Introducing: Carsebridge 48 Year 

The Only Ever Official Bottling from this Closed Grain Distillery 

This is only the 4th bottling we have seen from Carsebridge Distillery, and the only ever official bottling. It is bottled at 43.2% after maturing in American Oak. 90pts from Serge @WhiskyFun. Only 12 bottles are coming to Alberta, 6 of them to KWM!

Producer Description: “The first release in this series of just 1,000 bottles of this ultra-rare grain whisky from a closed distillery, is also the oldest Carsebridge ever bottled. A fascinating whisky, it’s an unique, sophisticated and subtle old single grain that rewards patient study.”

Carsebridge 48 Year – 43.2% – Distilled 1970 – Refill American Oak Hogsheads – Distiller’s Tasting Note: “Nose: Delicate and fragile. Shy, then rich and tart. Sweet, floral notes of dried flowers and oil, in a dusty oak drawer. Like a bowl of extremely ripe fruit left in the sunshine; plum, peach and red apple. Hints of sawn oak, mint and white chocolate truffle. Unexpectedly light and balanced throughout. Body: Medium. Thick textured. Palate: A voluptuous mouthfeel and a big, soft, sweet taste, with juicy hints of apple, then oak shavings and gentle spice that together evoke an artist’s studio. A soft, fleeting and subtle floral note. Finish: Light, volatile, and longer than expected. Discreet spice; light wood, grape stems, raisins and subtly, more oiled wood.” – $1750

90pts Serge @WhiskyFun.org: “1970? Wasn’t that one of the greatest years for rock and roll? Let it Be, Morrison Hotel, Big Yellow Taxi, Spill The Wine, After The Gold Rush, Abraxas, Lucky Man, Layla… But also Janis… Okay, enough brochure-y little writings, let’s try this oldie… Colour: gold. Nose: it’s a thrill to have both the futuristic Invergordon and this one side-by-side. Both make you further understand that time is a key component, and that no whisky could be genuine whisky without time. In this very case we’re finding sweeter aromas, especially the ones that we often call ‘pina-colada-y’, mainly pineapple and coconut. We’ll add tinier notes of honeysuckle, orange blossom, marzipan, potpourri, ylang-ylang and perhaps hollyhock. Mouth: it is rounder and mellower than the Invergordon, but quality’s very equivalent. Crushed bananas, hay wine, overripe apples, quince jelly, hazelnut oil, a few drops of chardonnay (not the oaked junk they’re making at some places)… Finish: medium, rather fresh, and rather on bananas and vanilla fudge. Comments: the Invergordon was a wee notch more complex, but this ones just great as well. It’s fabulous that the oak hasn’t taken over one bit – but it’s also true that they have proper blenders at Diageo’s. Blenders that aren’t just salesmen. SGP:640 – 90 points.”

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Introducing: Bruichladdich Black Art 6.1 

Adam Hannet’s 2nd Turn at the Dark Whisky Arts 

The sixth edition of Bruichladdich’s Black Arts Series is out. I’ll let them fill you in on it:

Distiller’s Description: “A cryptic composition of casks, the legendary Bruichladdich Black Art reaches its sixth edition. This unpeated single malt has undergone a parallel journey with our head distiller, Adam. Having worked closely with these casks in his early days in the warehouses, under the guidance of then Master Distiller Jim McEwan, Adam has had the honour of learning and developing alongside this spirit. The substantial task of hand-selecting and blending our very best spirit now falls to him alone.”

Bruichladdich Black Art 6.1 – 46.9% – 26 Year – Distilled 1990 – Cask Types are Not Disclosed, but there is Definitely Some Wine Casking Going On! – Distiller’s Tasting Note: “Character: Like its predecessors, this expression of Black Art will take you on a spiritual journey. Nose: There is a huge depth and richness on initial nosing. Roll the glass through your fingers to rouse the aromas and rich, black charred oak with blackberry jam, dark chocolate, raisin, plum, elderberry and apple appear. Notes of marzipan and lemon meringue pie give sweetness and tell of the Bruichladdich DNA working with the casks. Cedar wood and brown sugar come through as the whisky opens. Taste: The richness and vitality of the oak and the fruit is astounding. The soft orchard fruit of the spirit comes through after opening a little, sitting beautifully alongside fragrant vanilla custard. Sip again and taste the dark fruits; date, fig, raisin and chocolate, crystallised ginger and floral red rose. Impossible to define as a particular style this dram twists and changes constantly, each layer revealed adds to the mystery of how this whisky was created. Layers of honeycomb, soft fruit, praline, tobacco coconut and a sublime texture tell of its class. Mood: There may never be an understanding of how this whisky was created but tasting it and understanding why is more important. To compare and compartmentalise this exceptionally rare and unique dram is to miss the point of a whisky that is the essence of the distiller’s instinct, passion and experience. If you must ask, you will never know. Finish: Chocolate, apricot, pineapple, classic exotic fruits from well-aged Bruichladdich tell of the quality and balance of oak and spirit. The oak speaks of its quality now with brown sugar, ginger nut biscuits, toffee, orange scented caramel and a velvet tobacco finish.” – $365

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Serendipitous Acquisition: Port Charlotte MC:01 

Duty Free Marsala Finished Whisky! 

So this is supposed to be a Duty Free release, but by a logistical error we ended up with some, instead of the Port Charlotte MRC 01 which is still coming later. Bottled at 58.3% this 2009 vintage, “heavily peated Laddie” was matured in ex-European oak Sicilian fortified wine barriques.

Bruichladdich Port Charlotte MC:01  – 58.3% – 9 Year – Matured in Marsala Casks – Distiller’s Tasting Note: “Nose: Cloves and orange initially. rose petals, toasted oak and a slight yet biting peat smoke. Ripe peach and hints of apricot come through. Left to open, the glass will reveal more warmed peach with vanilla and salted caramel. The smoke is slightly hidden behind the fruit and the vanilla sweet oak notes. Once considerably aired the tar and charred wood from the smoke come through more. Palate: On the palate, there is a velvet touch that releases a little heat before moving into a subtle dryness from the French oak. Fruit and smoke combine beautifully with tar and peach, poached pear and red apples. A note of dry earth, dried peat maybe along with vanilla, clove spice and toasted oak. A splash of water brings a nutty, Christmas cake edge and the classic marine, ozone notes. Finish: The finish has a tender softness and is a lovely mix of soft peach and peat smoke. The Sicilian wine edge is sweet fruit and a delicious Christmas cake whisper, the smoke fades and the toasted oak leaves a nutty vanilla that is satisfyingly warm. Character: Soft yet bursting with fruit and character. A feel good whisky, an autumn walk in the woods then a good book by the warm fire kind of whisky. Enjoy.” – $140

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Introducing Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1989 

Another Elegant Beautifully Presented Glemo… 

We grabbed as much of this as we could before it disappears, as the 1990 did before it. The second release in Glenmorangie’s The Bond House No.1 Series, this 27 year old 1989 vintage Glenmorangie was bottled at 43%. Some of the whisky was matured in ex-Côte-Rôtie wine casks from the northern Rhône in France.

Producer Description: “Created from an irreplaceable spirit celebrated in an inimitable assemblage of casks, Glenmorangie Grand Vintage Malt 1989 is the second release in our exclusive Vintage Collection, Bond House No. 1. This rich and complex whisky emerged from some of the final spirit ever distilled in our former still house – home to Scotland’s tallest stills for more than a century. As it lay maturing, the vintage’s distinctive character inspired an exceptional marriage of whiskies, conceived to complement the most prestigious parcel of all – finished in ex-Côte- Rôtie wine casks. After 27 years of judicious maturation, the subtle finesse of Glenmorangie unites with a rare intensity, in a momentous single malt.”

Glenmorangie Grant Vintage Malt 1989 – 43% – Partially Matured in ex-Côte-Rôtie – Distiller’s Tasting Note: “Aroma: “Astonishingly complex, with toasted marshmallows, almonds and a perfumed top note emerging alongside vanilla and fudge. Baked apples burst forth with red fruits, blackcurrants and tropical fruits, followed by freshly baked bread, beeswax and a hint of wood smoke. Palate: Syrupy textures and a peppery sensation on the palate, lead to the richness of baked apples, buttery fudge and gentle citrus notes. Finish: Orange blossom entwines with honey, eucalyptus oil, aniseed and leather in a long and powerful finish, ending with classic wood spices and oak shavings.” – $850

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Introducing: Talisker 40 Year (1978) 

The oldest general release of Talisker, ever…  

There has only ever been one older bottling of Talisker, a private bottling done by the distillery for a private client in China. This 40 year old was distilled in 1978 (which is a very important year) and bottled in 2018 at 50% after finishing in Oloroso sherry solera casks. It is unusual for whisky to be matured in solera casks, let alone Oloroso sherry casks which matured 40+ year old wine. This is the first release in the Bodega Series, which will highlight the centuries-old relationship between whisky distilleries and sherry bodegas. This Oloroso is from Delgado Zuleta, one of Spain’s oldest sherry bodegas, and a historic supplier of casks to Talisker distillery.

 Talisker 40 Year – 50% – Oloroso Sherry Finish – Distiller’s Tasting Note: “Nose: Mild and rich, with light nose prickle. The sweet fruitiness of sultanas and pears in syrup, then orange peel, framed in oiled sandalwood, with a salty suggestion of seaweed or sea air in the middle, on a base of faintly smoky raw sugar. Water brings up a buttery note of short crust pastry and a waxy hint. Palate: At natural strength, the texture is very fine; oil-smooth and lightly coating. The taste starts sweetly fruity – white grapes, more sultanas – then becomes sea-salty and savoury, before finishing hot and peppery. As the sweet waves of flavour roll out across the palate, they break over a hint of that Talisker trademark, hot chilli spice, and some scented smoke. There’s great balance and vigour throughout. Adding water may tame the fire a little, but the lion remains wild at heart. Finish: Long and warming, with a late, great tongue-tingling nuttiness in the embers as the fire slips down, and a last smoky trace of snuffed candle. Overall: An absolute treat of a dram – and an epic opportunity to experience the craft from a lesser-known bodega. We’re excited to see what’s next…” So are we! $5400

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New Japanese Whiskies 

From Some Distilleries We’ve Never Heard of Before…  

A few curious new Japanese whiskies are in!

Producer’s Description (Kujira): “Kujira Ryukyu Whisky is reserved in selected American Kentucky bourbon casks for more than 20 years. It is exceptionally malted, fermented, and distilled by craftsman in the distillery. KUJIRA grain whisky is made from best quality Indica rice and unique Okinawa’s black koji. It has complex aroma and mellow taste, give whisky lovers a different and new concept of single malt whisky.”

Producer’s Description (Yamazakura): “Witness the craft of one of the Japan’s ji-whisky producers, Sasanokawa Shuzo. Sasanokawa Shuzo has been making sake and shochu since 1765. They added whisky production to their core line-up in 1946. The family is considered an honourable one, and Japanese Whisky fans might remember that Hanyu / Ichiro went bankrupt, Sasanokawa Shuzo came to the rescue to save the inventory. Today they still produce their popular line of classic Japanese spirits on site, along with a range of whisky brands distilled locally and acquired.”

  1. Kijura 8 Year Single Grain Japanese Whisky – 43% – Shinzato Shuzo Distillery – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: Honey, floural scents, dried figs. Palate: Candied dates, cream, vanilla, oak spicy. Finish: Licorice, spices, medium long.” – $165
  2. Kijura 20 Year Single Grain Japanese Whisky – 43% – Kumesen Syuzou Distillery – Matured in American Oak – Produced from Rice and “Black Koji” – Producer Tasting Note: “Nose: herbs, various plum fruits hint, prune, mint candy. Palate: balanced light body, sweet, vanilla, spice, smoky woodiness. Finish: licorice, Japanese pepper, medium finish” – $345
  3. Yamazakura Pure Malt Whisky – 48% – Sasankoawa Shuzo Distillery – Producer Description: “Yamazakura Pure Malt Whisky is aged in sherry cask with slightly peated malt. A mild, drinkable expression, featuring notes of cherry, oak, and earth.” – $185

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Also in the Advent Genre 

Unique New Whisky Gift Packs 

Not quite Advent Calendars, but cool little sets none the less…

  1. Master of Malt 12 Whiskies of Christmas – We are only expecting 25 of these 12 bottle whisky sets. Not quite a Whisky Advent Calendar, but more than a gift pack! – Producer Description: “Drinks by the Dram have unveiled a the perfect Christmas present for those whisky enthusiasts in your life – The 12 Scotch Whiskies of Christmas! This specially-curated bundle of festive deliciousness features 12 wax-sealed 30ml drams of Scotch whisky, from single malts to single grains, blended malts and more (including whisky worth over £100 per bottle!) – enjoy a different dram each day during the Twelve Days of Christmas (y’know, from Christmas Day onwards).” – $120
  2. Master of Malt Whisky Regions of Scotland – If you believe in Whisky Regions, which is a little like believing in Unicorns and fairies, then this is the gift set for you! If you just want to sample 5 very different styles of whisky, or give them away as a wee gift, then this might also be for you… From Drinks by the Dram: “It’s incredible just what a huge range of different styles of whisky that are produced all over Scotland. Drinks by the Dram came up with this tasting set of five 3cl samples to showcase the Regions of Scotland, from the peaty, smoky Islay; to the fruity, malty Highlands; the soft, floral Lowlands; and the honeyed, often Sherried Speyside and more!” – $68
  3.  Bruichladdich Barley Exploration Pack 3x200ml – Beautiful presentation box containing the Barley Exploration gift pack collection 3 x 20cl Islay Barley 2010, Bere Barley 2008 Organic Barley 2009. – $75

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KWM 2018 Whisky Advent Calendar Update  

The 5th Edition is More than 75% Pre-Sold with 1 Week Until Advent 

Whisky Advent is JUST A WEEK AWAY, and the Whisky Advent Elves are busy at our warehouse pulling together our 5th annual Calendar. We are really excited about the  Kensington Wine Market 2018 Whisky Advent Calendar. For the first time we have a Japanese whisky in our Whisky Advent Calendar. We also have two different Canadian single malts, both of which are really exciting. One of them is from a cask bottled exclusively for KWM, and the other is a highly sought after limited edition whisky. We also have award winning whiskies from England and France, and that is just a taste of what is to come! We have more than a dozen single casks whiskies in this year’s edition, and a number of distilleries never before featured in the Kensington Wine Market Whisky Advent Calendar. The bulk of the Calendar (over 75%!) is Single Malt Scotch whisky, but there are also a pair of exciting Blended Malt Scotch whiskies.

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The  KWM 2018 Whsky Advent Calendar is available for pickup and purchase in-store and online!  The KWM Whisky Advent Calendar consists of 24 50ml premium whiskies, one for each day of Advent. There is also a bonus 25th bottle, a 100ml Scotch Malt Whisky Society cask strength, single cask, single malt Scotch whisky. This year’s Society whisky will only be featured in the Calendar. You can follow along on social media with us, as well as on the KWM Blog, as we highlight the day’s whisky and its producer. The Whisky Advent Calendar also includes a discount card, giving you the chance to save on any must have bottles…

You can order the Kensington Wine Market 2018 Whisky Advent Calendar in-store, by phone 403-283-8000 and  online.

Thank You for Reading the Malt Messenger! 

Contact Disclaimers 

If you have any whisky questions or comments concerning The Malt Messenger please contact me by e-mail, phone, or drop by the store.

All of the products mentioned in THE MALT MESSENGER can be purchased in store, over the phone or from our website at www.kensingtonwinemarket.com. All prices quoted in the Malt Messenger are subject to change and don’t include GST. In the case of discrepancies in pricing, the price in our in store point of sale will be taken as correct.

Thanks for reading the Malt Messenger.

Slainte!

Andrew Ferguson

Owner Scotchguy

Kensington Wine Market

403-283-8000

Calgary, Alberta, Canada

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/11/kensington-wine-market-malt-messenger-no-92-by-andrew-ferguson-more-kwm-casks-loads-of-whisky-news-you-can-use-whisky-news/

A Pair of Can’t-Miss Speysiders—K&L Exclusives from Linkwood and Craigellachie  – Scotch Whisky News

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There are instances in any person’s booze exploration that are transitional. I used to be somewhat of a checklister, but I’ve learned to stop and smell the malt. As we examine this incredibly diverse and deep category, there’s a strong propensity to categorize our experiences. This is the X of Y. This is like an older version of that. This bottle reminds me of that bottle. We want to categorize our experiences so we can better explain and understand them. But inherent in the goal of understanding and explaining our experiences we remove ourselves from them. Sometimes we just need to sit back and enjoy.

2006 Craigellachie 12 Year Old “Sovereign” KL Exclusive Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) $54.99 View

1996 Linkwood 21 Year Old “Signatory” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml) $129.99 View

So if I tell you that this is the best Sherried Speysider under $55 this year – will it be more or less fun if you line it up next to every other sub-$55 sherry bomb you’ve acquired in the last 12 months? There aren’t many so I expect it will be a quick tasting. If I tell you that this is easily the best Linkwood for your dollar in the entire country, there’s no doubt that you’ll want to try it. But I can only confidently say that because I’ve tried every other available Linkwood on the market today. You could spend thousands to do a thorough survey of the marketplace, compare anonymous online reviews and ultimately you’d be very lucky to disprove my postulate. But all that work wouldn’t enhance your experience of these exceptional malts. Indeed, you’ve just wasted all the time you could have spent experiencing with all that thinking.

So stop and enjoy two of the best Speysider Scotches we’ll ever sell you from two exceptional distilleries in two very different styles. Both exemplify what has now become the most important Scottish region and yet each is completely different from the other. A truly befuddling conundrum indeed. Best to have a drink and think about it.

—David Othenin Girard, KL SoCal Spirits Buyer

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2006 Craigellachie 12 Year Old “Sovereign” KL Exclusive Single Sherry Butt Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) ($54.99)

Every year the biggest struggle we have when selecting casks isn’t necessarily finding ultra-rare casks. If we’re willing to pay for them, the diamonds are there. What’s much more difficult to find are the affordable sherried malts from good distilleries. Last year we smashed things up with an absolutely stellar Aultmore. This year we’ve got a few replacements, one of them being this incredible cask of Craigellachie. While it doesn’t have the inky, nearly bitter extraction that the Aultmore had, there might not be a better sherried whisky available for this price anywhere. Craigellachie is a workhorse whisky, but its stalwart quality is well known to blenders. Sitting on the hill directly across from Macallan, just a short trip over the River Spey, Craigellachie was never sold as a single malt because Dewar’s was too lucrative to spend time selling single malt. There’s no visitor’s center or other fanfare but those who know this special distillery grow to love it. In 2014, the distillery finally released an OB. Long before those well-received bottles appeared on the scene, the malt was well-regarded by Independent Bottlers, especially when aged in sherry casks. The rich malty character and deep waxy fruit are perfectly balanced by the roasted nutty flavors of this sherry butt. No question, this will be up there as one of the best values we’ll have to offer in malts all year, maybe ever. An absolute must-try by any measure. Those who know best are bunkering this bad boy.

David Othenin-Girard | KL Staff Member | Review Date: October 31, 2018

I keep wanting to call this the cask of the season, but I only hesitate because there’s SO much more coming down the line I don’t want to overstate just how special this whisky truly is. That said there’s no doubt that this will be one of those incredible values that people will be asking for in the months and maybe years to come. 12 full years in an oloroso sherry butt have turned the majestic malt from Craigellachie into a veritable gem. The nose is full on oloroso with the dry nutty aromatics taking full charge. It’s not the extracted almost bitter bomb that we had from last year’s Aultmore, but it’s no less complex and filled with sherry character. The palate is ultra rich with the bold oloroso character traits locked with the dense malt – the tiniest hint of fresh peat aromatic is a bonus. With a bit of water the whole thing transmutes into one of the most balanced and approachable malts we’ve sold in years. The nuttiness gives way slightly to a complex dried blood orange, cigar box, exotic wood. The palate has tons of sweet malt to balance the sherry and while some may prefer this at full strength with water this is one of the most exciting and drinkable whiskies we’ve ever sold. The total package in every sense of the term and priced to bunker. The first of many legends in the 2018 Whisky Season!

Neal Fischer | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 06, 2018

Oh man, I like this and wish I was sitting in my grandpa’s basement drinking this right now. This toasty Scotch comes at you with scents of old leather, cigar box, tobacco, and just a little creaminess to take the edge off. There are tiny notes of dark caramel and molasses, cardamom, clove, and a lingering smell of buttery cooked cherries. The palate boasts bigger spice, bolder leather, and a phenolic bandaid flavor that I love. Adding water enhances the caramel and brings out a nice saltiness.

Andrew Whiteley | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 06, 2018

This has daily drinker all over it. It’s a hefty, oily, waxy Scotch with deep sherry notes at a measly 55 bucks for full cask strength juice. The powdery tannins are present, but not overpowering. They showcase the sexy rancio flavors of the finest sherries and bring out the underlying fruity character of the malt. A little water added and this malt explodes into flavors of rolled oats, granola, stone fruit compote, dried figs and cold beer. A perfect pour for every night of the week.

Anthony Russo | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 03, 2018

Its richly dark color is completely natural and due to its delicious 12 years in sherry oak. The near 60% ABV is barely detectable on the nose, which is instead replaced by dried apricot and cooking spices. After a few drops of water, the flavors truly appear and the liveliness of this whisky shows itself. With the new 12 year standard price hanging around $70, it is unique to have something this interesting at this age/cask strength. Great find!

Jeffrey Jones | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 03, 2018

I had expected a rich and juicy sherry aged single malt with no smoke but got a pleasant surprise when I tasted this cask. The nose had the deep dried fruit aromas that I had expected but they were topped off with nice smoke notes. In the mouth it was rich and round with plenty of smoke to balance out the flavor profile. A great value for a high quality single malt.

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1996 Linkwood 21 Year Old “Signatory” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml) ($129.99)

The exceptional Linkwood distillery is another one of the grand old Diageo malts that you wonder why they haven’t bothered to make a big deal of. Until you dive deeper into how and why the distillery is so important for making them money on the globally viable blended whisky market. After one taste of this Linkwood it’s immediately clear that this is one of the heart malts for the great Johnnie Walker Blends. It kind of reminds me of all the things I love about Johnnie Walker that aren’t peaty. Johnnie Walker, in particularly the Johnnie Green, is actually an incredibly high quality product compared to the majority of blended scotch on the market. The reason even the Black and Red are so well regarded is the addition of very special distilleries like Linkwood, which even in relatively small quantities give those whiskies a distinctive quality that’s hard to replicate. And since the deep complexities of Linkwood are so crucial to improving the character of those blends when inexpensive younger grain whisky is added to soften and stretch the flavors, we very rarely see it available on the open market. In many ways, Linkwood is the classic Speyside malt, but its character is nothing like the names you might associate with the area. The rich character is driven by big malt, herbal and unrelenting, that gives way on the palate to rich textured cereal and sweet grain qualities. A bold complex style that will take most drinkers by surprise. But once you know you’ll never forget.

David Othenin-Girard | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 07, 2018

Linkwood is one of those distilleries that has a pretty surprising following despite not being at all available in the US. The last official release from this exceptional distillery was a limited release 37 year old, which was sold for $600+ initially. In a lot of ways Linkwood is the quintessential “Scotch” for my palate, a bench mark for Scotchiness that they set pretty high. Here we have it in its most classic form—although in desperate need of a tiny dollop of fresh water, there are few malts more enamoring. After a little squirt of spring water, the powerful dark malt suddenly falls away to reveal a complex web of orchard fruit and citrus peel. Canned pineapple and white nectarines, pointed by a subtle green plum and floral honey. Subtle briochey malt lingers in the background, hinting at the rich, textured, almost sweet entry. More of those tart plums, dark cocoa powder, sweet barley tea and a long white peppery finish. An absolute dream that’s approachable enough for nearly any Scotch drinker to fall in love. Indeed this could be the quintessential Speysider. ADD THAT WATER!

Andrew Whiteley | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 07, 2018

Immediately familiar and yet, completely new. This whisky explodes on the palate with a ferocity that I confess, I must tame with a cube or more than a drop of water. As a major Diageo component whisky, you will typically only experience Linkwood cut with soft grain whisky, never in it’s full power. This beast at cask strength is a bomb of chocolate covered fruit mixed with granola in vanilla yogurt. It’s got tang, sweetness, a bit of dank funk, and major muscle. With a generous drop of water, the game changes dramatically. The softer side of Linkwood that feels like home comes out. A complex blend of cooking spices make you feel like you’re baking for the holidays. Jam and honey and fresh winter fruits fill the glass. It’s immediately transformed in to one of the easiest drinking Scotches in the store. Factor in the price of this bottle compared to a OB from the distillery and you’ve got yourself a hell of a deal.

Jeffrey Jones | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 05, 2018

It is always exciting to see something from Linkwood on the shelf because it produces exceptionally good single malts. The nose on this bottling is deep with dried fruit aromas. In the mouth it is full bodied and elegant with layered malt and dry fruit flavors and a nice mouth feel.

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/11/a-pair-of-cant-miss-speysiders-kl-exclusives-from-linkwood-and-craigellachie-scotch-whisky-news/

MASTER THE ART OF BLENDING AT HOME WITH CHIVAS’ EXPERIMENTAL GIFT KIT – Scotch Whisky News

Chivas

MASTER THE ART OF BLENDING AT HOME WITH

CHIVAS’ EXPERIMENTAL GIFT KIT

October, 2018 – Chivas, the original luxury blended Scotch whisky, has launched a Blending Kit featuring a selection of whiskies and tools to give Scotch lovers the chance to get hands-on and experience the art of blending in the comfort of their own home.

The perfect gift for any whisky fan, the kit contains four single malt whiskies and one blended grain whisky, each representing a different flavor characteristic: floral, fruity, citrus, creamy, and smoky. Armed with a pipette and a beaker – plus a bottle of one of the world’s best-loved blended Scotch whiskies, Chivas 12, for inspiration – whisky fans are encouraged to explore, experiment and have fun testing their skills and senses to delicately combine the whiskies and craft a blend worth shouting about.

The new release was launched to celebrate the magic of blending Scotch, and to bring the craft to life outside of Chivas Director of Blending Sandy Hyslop’s blending room. 

Sandy, who’s been blending Scotch whisky for more than 30 years, said: “At Chivas we believe that blended is better – in life and in Scotch. Every day I get to indulge in my greatest passion, experimenting with the world’s finest malt and grain whiskies to create something extraordinary when blended together – and this passion is something I want to share with other whisky fans. Each component in a blend plays an important role in determining the profile of the finished whisky – I can’t wait to see what creations my fellow blenders around the world put together.”

Chivas’ belief in blending was instilled by founding brothers, James and John Chivas, who pioneered the art in 19th century Scotland. And now, two centuries later, the Blending Kit celebrates Chivas’ continued commitment to bringing together the best malt and grain whiskies to create something extraordinary.

Blended whisky lovers around the world are invited to give it a go themselves and share their success stories on Instagram @ChivasRegal using #MyChivasBlend.

Find an interactive guide to your Blending Kit experience and why blended is better at Chivas.com 

NOTES 

The Blending Kit (RRP £25, available at The Whisky Exchange)

  • x1 5cl Blended Grain Whisky (Floral)
  • x4 5cl Single Malt Whiskies (Fruity, Citrus, Creamy, Smoky)
  • x1 Pipette
  • x1 Beaker
  • x1 5cl Empty Bottle
  • x1 5cl Miniature Bottle of Chivas Regal 12

About Chivas

Chivas believes that blended is better, in life and in Scotch.

The original luxury blended Scotch whisky, Chivas’ belief in blending was instilled by founding brothers, James and John Chivas, who pioneered the art of blending in 19th century Scotland. Since then, Chivas has been integral to the growth of the Scotch whisky category worldwide – by bringing together the best malt and grain whiskies to create something extraordinary.

Chivas believes in the power of blending in life, as well as in Scotch. In bringing people together to create a greater whole – which is why Chivas is proud to be the global spirits partner of Manchester United, the world’s biggest football club; and in blending ambition with generosity and using success to enrich the lives of others – which is why the Chivas Venture supports social startups with $1m in annual funding.

Chivas blends its home in Speyside, Scotland, with more than 100 countries across the globe, who together have made Chivas the global success it is today, selling more than 4.2 million 9L cases every year.

The Chivas range blends timeless classics with modern innovation, including: Chivas 12, Chivas Extra, Chivas XV, Chivas Mizunara, Chivas 18, Chivas Ultis, Chivas 25, Chivas Regal The Icon, and the Global Travel Retail exclusive Chivas Brothers Blend.

Chivas. Success is a blend.

www.Chivas.com

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/11/master-the-art-of-blending-at-home-with-chivas-experimental-gift-kit-scotch-whisky-news/