New Arrivals and Great Malts for Burns Night 2019!

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New Arrivals and Great Malts for Burns Night 2019!

Single Casks; Malts Grains

Just a week until Burns Night 2019, you’ll need some great Scotch to go with your haggis. Whether you like smoky malts like Laphroaig, Caol Ila or Octomore; or sweet malt whisky such as Edradour, GlenDronach or Tamdhu; we’ve got a single cask to suite you.

THE SELECTION

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2019/01/new-arrivals-and-great-malts-for-burns-night-2019/

A Bridge To Another Time— K&L Exclusives “Carsebridge 52 Year Old & Cameronbridge 26 Year Old” – Scotch Whisky News

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Spectacular Single Grains that Harken Back to a Bygone Time

A large proportion of Scotch over the last 50 years was produced at two distilleries located in Fife near the Firth of Forth. The Cameronbridge and Carsebridge are two of the largest whisky distilleries in history. Both adopted the new grain distillation technology developed by the Irish inventor Aeneas Coffey in the mid 19th century. This new technology allowed for the production of vast amounts of whisky at a fraction of the cost, and the early adoption of the new technology is part of what made Scotch whisky so popular around the world for so long.

The light, low flavor whisky was used to cut and soften the more powerful single malts, which had previously not been readily exported in bottle. But the new-found style had appeal and value that single malt scotch did not. The merits of blending are what pushed Scotch whisky to the forefront of the industry. While the common trope in the old guard of Scotch drinkers is that single malt is the way to go, we’re slowly starting to open up the world of single grain. As it has become clear to a growing number of curious drinkers, single grain is so special—different, but special. It might take 30 years for the stuff to start tasting good, but when it does it can truly change one’s mind about the category.

These two Bridge distilleries, one long closed and the other now the largest grain distillery in Europe, represent the very best of what single grain has to offer: wonderful nuance, subtle but distinct character, and stupendous value. We’re moving into a new period of appreciation for this entire category, and there’s no better place to get great grain whisky than KL.

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1991 Cameronbridge 26 Year Old “Old Particular” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Scotch Whisky (750ml) ($79.99)

This is a sister cask to our huge hit with the 25 year old Cameronrbridge earlier in the year. The only difference now is that it comes in a year older. Cameronbridge is one of Diageo’s workhorse grain whisky distilleries, creating the backbone for its world famous brands like Johnnie Walker and White Horse, while simultaneously serving as the home for grain neutral products like Tanqueray and Pimm’s. The dual purpose site is one of the biggest producers of spirit in the UK and because of that volume we can secure incredible pricing on very old whisky. If you have followed our single grain bottlings over the years, you will know what is to be had here. If you are new to old grain stocks, this is the perfect introduction. It’s luscious, incredibly smooth, and shows a beautiful array of fruit, wood, and spice. All at an extraordinary price for the age.

David Othenin-Girard | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 13, 2018

This tiny cask of Cameronbridge is one of the oddest and most interesting grains we’ve ever bottled. Full of green, almost oceany, flavors it’s nothing like most of the middle aged grains we buy. Powerful aromas of salty moss, old oak and forest floor continue on the palate, but are bolstered by sweet oak and funky spice. The twinge of mushroom character and fresh forest floor notes have the strangest similarity to one my favorite distillers—Springbank. Not that we’re in the same territory, but more like an allusion—the literary device of grain whisky. A fun one to be sure and considering the odd nature and low output, this one likely won’t last too much longer.

Andrew Whiteley | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 01, 2018

Creamy vanilla, soft brioche, caramelized sugar. This is a little sugar and spice and everything nice for your winter holiday cheer. A lively citrus note keeps things particularly festive. A bit of maple syrup and caramel round out the brighter sweet tones with a heavier bass note. Just a faint herbal thread in the background keeps things from getting cloyingly sweet and provides enough backbone to still call this sweeter-than-usual grain whisky balanced. It’s an easy choice on this one, as I’m fairly confident no one would be disappointed to have this in their glass.

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1965 Carsebridge 52 Year Old “Sovereign” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Scotch Whisky (750ml) ($349.99)

Closed in 1983, the once prolific stocks of Carsebridge are running low. At one time the large grain distillery in the town of Alloa was one of Scotland’s biggest. When the whiskey industry fell on hard times due to massive oversupply, Carsebridge was an early victim and eventually was completely demolished in 1992. Diageo, the outgrowth of DCL, did retain the cooperage for some years, but even that was closed in 2011. It’s not every day that we get to the see the whiskies of yore and have access to them at such reasonable prices. Distilled in 1965, this beauty has spent 52 long years in a refill hogshead and it has naturally proofed itself down to a very drinkable 43.4% alcohol. Never bottled as an official distillery bottling, the only Carsebridge to ever reach the open market is in the form of independent bottlings of well aged stocks. Unfortunately, those days too are likely coming to a close as it is becoming harder and harder to find these ancient whiskies.

David Othenin-Girard | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 13, 2018

It’s still incredible to me that we’re still able to sell whisky distilled before the moon landing. This whisky, likely forgotten somewhere deep in a dank Scottish warehouse, survived the blenders for more than a half century to end up here in our store. What’s even more incredible is how overtly delicious this one is. The concentration after 50+ years creates an aromatic character almost like cognac, but without the syrupy sweetness. You’d expect the thing to be bitter with extracted oak by this age, but you’d be wrong. It’s sweet, nutty and packed full of rancio fruit. This is a singular experience that just can’t be had anywhere else in the whisky drinking world. A steal and a deal considering the only other 50+ year old grain whisky being sold in the States costs $900 and a sister cask of this same whisky costs $550 in London.

William Beare | KL Staff Member | Review Date: January 08, 2019

Drinking whiskey this old is like watching your grandpa dance. After too many years some whiskeys just lose a bit of luster. The hop goes out of their two-step. But when you find one who still can move, it’s captivating and beautiful. It’s pure grace with the added value of wisdom lending efficiency to every step and movement. The Carsebridge 52 makes me think of Christopher Walken at 60 years old nailing perfect plié after perfect plié in the lobby of the LA Grand Hotel for a music video. It’s so elegant, right from the nose, giving waves of dulce de leche, soft brown leather, and cardamom spice. And– true to my simile– simply dances across your tongue, smooth as can be. As some of my colleagues noted, the fruit takes a few sips to emerge, but dried apricot comes out on the finish, along with a bit of salted caramel pudding, and soft layers of cedar cigar box. Magnificent!

Jackson Lee | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 28, 2018

Nothing like Scotch for breakfast; what better way to start your day than with a 52-year-old dram? Before I even had my coffee I was pouring a sample into my glass when I found it on my desk this morning. If this didn’t wake me up, my coffee had no chance, but any residual grogginess evaporated and was instead replaced by heavenly wafts of rich brown sugar, candied figs, strawberries and cream with a little tangerine peel timidly showing through. If you’ve never had a 52-year-old Scotch for breakfast, you’re missing out. The texture alone was ethereal: light yet silky, super smooth with notes of marzipan and canned mandarin oranges. The finish was long, reminding me of a fruit salad cup, strawberry gummies, and butterscotch with a nice warmth to remind me that while it is not a major food group, it’s still exciting to mix up your morning routine.

Cameron Price | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 15, 2018

A beautiful single grain whisky that presents a luscious caramel and toffee nose with a side of shortbread. It’s as smooth as smooth comes, like a rich golden river of love streaming into your stomach.

Neal Fischer | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 15, 2018

Myyyyyyy goodness! Honey and baking spices jump out of the glass followed by scents of toasty caramels, juicy summer peaches, and fresh cherries. The palate is incredibly smooth and not over-oaked at all despite its considerable age, ending with flavors of toffee-covered nuts.

Andrew Whiteley | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 15, 2018

“If I could save time in a bottle/The first thing that I’d like to do/Is to save every day/’Til eternity passes away/Just to spend them with you” Sovereign has done the hard work of capturing time in a bottle. At first blush, this whisky is quite dry, but after a sip or two a shocking amount of fruit presents itself. It’s lush with stone fruits and pears. For those who prize “smooth” above all else in their whisky, it is impossible to surpass the rich, velvety quality of this dram. Darker notes of milk chocolate and dusty cocoa weave in and out of the glass. The angel’s share of this cask is enormous. It’s one of 157 bottles and proofed naturally to 43.4% alcohol. For comparison, most hogshead barrels yield about 250 bottles. Those are some thirsty angels, and with one taste, it’s obvious why.

Alex Schroeder | KL Staff Member | Review Date: November 15, 2018

This grain whisky is very vivacious on the nose: hints of stone fruit, honey, spice, saw dust, and unsweetened dark chocolate. On the palate, it is naturally proofed down to 43% abv, so it is incredibly smooth to drink. It leaves warm, toasty flavors of caramel, cream, vanilla, dark cocoa, and honeyed cereals lingering for over a minute. The complexity and integration are stunning after 52 years sitting in the barrel. What a special treat to taste such an old, lively whisky!

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2019/01/a-bridge-to-another-time-kl-exclusives-carsebridge-52-year-old-cameronbridge-26-year-old-scotch-whisky-news/

Happy New Year from Bartels Whisky – Scotch Whisky News

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Happy New Year

We hope you all had a lovely festive time and all the best for 2019

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We saw in 2019 nicely with our first festival of the year – Harrow Whisky Festival – It is a two day event at ‘Best Western Plus’ Grims Dyke Hotel in Harrow and tickets are for one of the three tastings or can include an overnight stay and meal in the restaurant.  The food is superb and the hospitality unbeatable.  We already have the dates in our diary for next year.  Please see more information here, if you are local (or even if you’re not)!

HARROW WHISKY FESTIVAL

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The Festival ‘Best Seller’

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Cameronbridge 1982

People couldn’t quite believe the price we were selling a 36 Year Old grain for!  It was really nice to see the festivals goers trying and absolutely loving this whisky!  Some of the comments made our day such as ‘the nicest grain they had ever tried!’

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New Year Voucher

To Welcome you into the New Year please take advantage of this voucher for 10% off anything you purchase.

‘thanks19′

Shop Now

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2019/01/happy-new-year-from-bartels-whisky-scotch-whisky-news/

The Whisky Exchange “The Perfect Burns Night Dinner” – Guid Auld Scotch Drink” – Scotch Whisky News

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The Perfect Burns Night Dinner – Guid Auld Scotch Drink

At the end of the month is one of the biggest dates in the Scottish calendar. When it comes to excuses for a party, at least. Less than a month after Hogmanay and it’s time for another night of celebration – 25 January is Burns Night.

Who was Robert Burns?

For those who don’t know the work of Robert Burns, he was a Scottish writer, who was born on 25 January 1759 – hence the date of Burns Night – and died in 1796. In his time he was a not only a writer and poet, but also a farmer and an exciseman, working a beat in the lowlands that included checking up on at least Annandale distillery.

He is one of the most influential writers in Scottish history, and his influence is still felt today. In honour of his life, his birthday has now become a day of celebration, with Burns Suppers and parties popping up around the world.

Sowing the seeds of Burns

If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you’ll know that I’m a bit of a fan of Burns and his poetry, with the seeds sown at my first Burns Supper at The Whisky Exchange in Vinopolis. Franchi Ferla of Simply Whisky stalked the floor while telling the tale of Tam o’ Shanter – still one of my favourite Burns poems – and I was a convert.

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Simply Whisky do Burns Night – If you see these two at the front of a Burns Supper, you’re in for a treat

Since then, I’ve expanded on my Burns Night obsession each year, with posts on food and beer ideas, ginny alternatives to whisky, a spot of poetry and keeping things more traditional. Strangely, the one thing I’ve not looked into is what whisky to drink with your Burns Supper.

A traditional Burns Supper can take many different forms – there have been suppers for more than 200 years and things have changed a lot over that time. However, here’s a skeleton of how things usually go and what we’d recommend – feel free to add bagpipers and as many courses as you like.

Before Dinner

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As an opening dram of the evening, we’d go for something lighter and more aperitif-like. To keep with the Burns theme, we’ve chosen Arran Robert Burns Single Malt, the ‘official’ Robert Burns whisky. We’re not entirely sure what makes it official, but it’s the perfect start to an evening of whisky, food and poetry.

Some hae meat an canna eat,
And some wad eat that want it;
But we hae meat, and we can eat,
And sae the Lord be thankit.
– The Selkirk Grace, the traditional opening to dinner

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The Soup

Some like a Scotch Broth, some a Cullen Skink, but if I’m about to chow down on a hearty main course, then Cock-a-leekie is the soup I want to start with. As the name suggests, it’s a chicken and leek soup, traditionally with prunes in the mix. I like the recipe on GreatBritishChefs from Graeme Taylor of A Scots Larder – it’s a bit more substantial than some, has carrots for extra sweetness and has the prunes cooked in from the beginning rather than used just as a garnish.

On thee aft Scotland chows her cood,
In souple scones, the wale o’food!
Or tumblin in the boiling flood
Wi’ kail an’ beef;
– Scotch Drink. Burns liked a bit of beef and cabbage soup

To go with the soup, we’d go for something lighter and sweeter, although with enough weight not to get lost – something that will pair rather than contrast with the homely, comfort-food character of chicken soup. We’ve chosen Bruichladdich Islay Barley. It’s buttery and creamy, like most Bruichladdichs, with a touch of grain sweetness. Our second choice is Glen Grant 18 Year Old. More delicate than the Bruichladdich, it’s got more sweetness and a touch of dried fruit richness hiding at the back – just the thing to pair with a prune-tinged Cock-a-leekie.

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The Haggis

The arrival of the haggis is the centrepiece of a Burns Supper. Cooked in whatever manner you wish (I like to wrap mine in foil and roast it), it should be brought in whole and presented to the assembled throng. It’s at this point that the most famous bit of dinner poetry is read – Address to a Haggis. This is the important bit:

His knife see rustic Labour dight,
An cut you up wi ready slight,
Trenching your gushing entrails bright
Like onie ditch;
And then, O what a glorious sight,
Warm-reekin, rich!

That means it’s slicey-slicey time. Cut open the Haggis and make sure it gets served quickly: haggis is at its best when hot. It’s usually served with neeps and tatties – mashed turnips and potatoes – and a sauce that often has a bit of whisky in. Just make sure you don’t pour whisky over the haggis: it’s not a Christmas pudding.

With the simple application of heat, a magical transformation occurs – warm-reekin, rich!

To go with the main course, you need something a bit more robust – haggis is a peppery beast, with strong flavours throughout, and the neeps and tatties normally have more than their fair share of butter. Our first pick is our Whisky-Exchange-exclusive Glenfarclas 2007 Marriage of Casks. It’s rich, spicy and very sherried, without getting too heavy – it won’t be cowed by a weighty haggis. And as an alternative, something a bit smoky: Talisker 2007 Distillers Edition – it’s got the classic salt, pepper and smoke Talisker character with an extra hit of richness from its amoroso finish. An excellent match.

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The Dessert

Dessert often gets a bit forgotten at Burns Suppers. However, when it comes to rib-sticking puds, the Scottish know a thing or two.

If you look beyond the deep-fried Mars Bar (no matter what The Three Drinkers recommend), there’s a whole raft of options, with Clootie Dumpling sitting at the top of my puddin’ pile. However, after a hearty serving of haggis, there’s only one dessert for me: cranachan.

It’s a Scottish riff on a style of pudding that pops up wherever there is milk: cream, something sweet, something crunchy and something fruity. Eschewing the southern decadence of the Eton Mess’s meringues, cranachan is straight-down-the-line Scottish: cream, heather honey, oats and raspberries. With maybe a splash of whisky. Just a splash…

Some experimental cranachans, including a rather tasty one using gooseberries…

Matching whisky and creamy things can be difficult, but we reckon something fruity will give an extra layer of flavour. Our first fruity dram is Ben Nevis 10 Year Old. It’s got a whiff of smoke and a rich chocolate background, but it’s also packed with tropical-fruit flavour – it’ll cut through the cream and compliment the berries. Our second choice is our exclusive Glenlivet 1981 from Signatory. It’s got orchard and stone fruit in spades, and has a rich, sherry-cask backbone that’ll make sure the cranachan doesn’t take over.

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After Dinner

Once the eating has finally finished, it’s time for some more whisky, and a bit of a sing-song. Arguably Burns’ most famous poem is one that people around the world sing without realising it’s one of his: Auld Laing Syne. It’s not all his own work, but he added some verses to an old folk song, and it’s thanks to him that it’s spread as far as it has.

While it’s best known as a new year song, it’s also traditionally sung at the end of a Burns Supper. It’s a song about remembering friendship and times past – the perfect end to the evening.

If you’re singing, you need a drink in your hand, and we’d go for something big and special. Our first choice is the Whisky-Exchange-exclusive Speyside 1973 bottled by The Whisky Agency. It’s packed with tropical and dried fruit, with the fruity spirit amplified by maturation in a sherry cask – we think it might have been a fino cask. Our second choice is even bigger and more sherried – our exclusive Edradour 2005 oloroso sherry cask. It’s a sherry monster, with loads of dried fruit and spice, just the thing for toasting the end of the perfect Burns Supper.

Scotch Drink

Whatever you do this Burns Night, make sure you raise a dram to the Ploughman Poet – as if we need an excuse to drink some guid auld scotch drink.

O thou, my muse!
guid auld Scotch drink!
Whether thro’ wimplin worms thou jink,
Or, richly brown, ream owre the brink,
In glorious faem,
Inspire me, till I lisp an’ wink,
To sing thy name!
Scotch Drink, my favourite Burns poem

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2019/01/the-whisky-exchange-the-perfect-burns-night-dinner-guid-auld-scotch-drinkthe-perfect-burns-night-dinner-guid-auld-scotch-drink-scotch-whisky-news/

7 deadly sins WHISKY tour, Northern Ireland….

 

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7 deadly sins WHISKY tour, Northern Ireland

Five days and nights in Belfast, a vibrant city with so much to see both in the city and surrounding areas, this is a tour Paul, Mark and Sean love to bits! Five days, five nights, seven deadly sins!

Day 1.  Welcome to Northern Ireland and the Country’s capital Belfast, where you  will stay for your duration of your tour. We start this morning  taking a tour of Belfast with some Game of Thrones locations en route, (quite different as your driver spent years as a soldier on the streets of the city during the troubles).  Free time to pub crawl in Belfast.  Your driver lives locally so knows the good spots in the city, overnight Belfast.

Day 2.  We head up the outstanding North Antrim Coast, visiting various Game of Thrones locations, such as Ballintoy Harbour which was the back drop for Theons return to the Iron Islands – and where the burning at the stakes was held on the beach, Portsteward Strand.  Early scenes of the Dothraki on horse back were filmed here, also the coast of Dorne, Downhill beach, which was the shores of dragonstone’s. The Dark hedges, which was the Kings road and one of the most requested locations to visit, were planted in the 18th century to impress visitors by the Stuart family.  Visit Cushendun Caves, where the red priestess Melisandre gave birth to the shadow creature.  See Larrybane Quarry, where Renly Baratheons camp in the storm lands and where the tournament in which Brienne of Tarth is introduced. Time for lunch in the Fullerton Arms in Ballintoy, it also has a GoT themed room and the fantastic door of thrones No6 to 10 carved from the trees of the Dark Hedges. There’s a a private dining room set in the world of GoT complete with banners and its’ own replica Iron Thrones.  We also visit Giants Causeway and Bushmills Distillery – In the small village of Bushmills, on the banks of the river you’ll find the oldest working distillery in Ireland, for over 400 years kept to the philosophy that hand crafting small batches is the way to produce beautifully smooth tasting Irish whiskey.  Matured in Sherry Casks is Paul’s favourite. Black Bush combines a high amount of malt whiskey matured in former Oloroso Sherry casks, with a sweet, batch-distilled grain whiskey. Return to Belfast where you stay overnight.

Day 3.  This morning we head down to Castle Ward, where in the opening scenes (season one), the 5 stark children and the bastard John Snow each adopt a Direwolf pup.  Get to meet real Direwolfs Odin and Thor and the chance to dress up in the costumes for photo ops.  Visit the castle where Bran falls from the window ledge in the winter fell courtyard and the cottage (aka) the Brothel of Winterfell. Then we drive to Echlinville Distillery – Northern Ireland’s first licensed distillery in over 125 years distilling its first spirit in 2013. Tours will be personally welcomed and guided through the process, from the barley arriving from the fields, to the maturation warehouse where the Angels are certainly enjoying their share. And after you have discovered the flavour, colour and mouthfeel of our spirits, relax and enjoy drinks of your choice in our bar. Tanks are also on this tour! Return to Belfast. Shall we blend tonight darling? https://whiskytours.scot/dunvilles-old-irish-whiskey

Day 4.  A drive south of the Border today, to the Great Northern Distillery  a private company owned by the Teeling Family, Jim Finn and David Hynes who between them established the Cooley Distillery and rebuilt the Kilbeggan Distillery before selling them in 2012. The Town of Dundalk has always been ideally suited to foster a distilling industry with access the purest water from the nearby Cooley Mountains. Since the late 1600’s brewing has been at the heart of Dundalk with breweries in the area. The Dundalk Distillery operated in the Town between 1708 and 1926. Two of the distillery buildings, the grain store and maltings, still exist and now house the County Museum and Dundalk Library. The Distillery operates two distinctive distilleries pot stills and columns that produce a diverse range of Irish whiskey spirit’s including grain, triple malt, double malt, peated malt and pot still whiskey. The distillery has a current capacity of 16 million litres of spirit with an opportunity to expand production. We spend some time down here in the Republic, with free time in Dundalk to experience the local pub scene. Back to Belfast.

Day 5. This morning a drive to Gosford Castle and park.  The castle has become known as the gloomy home of HouseTully. It was first seen in season 1 when Rob Stark executes Richard Karstark for treason and later used for season three’s gory Red Wedding in which several main characters were killed. Then a visit to Armagh to see the two main churches in the city situated on two hills, one Protestant and one Catholic.  Return to Belfast, your final night.

Whisky pubs we recommend in Belfast; The Harp Bar, incorporating the Dunville Swinging Diddy Lounges is decorated in plush red velvet fabrics and adorned with antique furnishings resonant with Victorian Belfast. Walls and cabinets feature rare memorabilia inspired by the building’s origins as a bonded warehouse – the headquarters of The Old Bushmills Distillery Company. Paul’s favourite Belfast bar.  The New Orpheus. The Orpheus: Ballroom of Romance has been a vision of Willie and Joanne Jack, alongside their late business partner and friend, Bruce Kirk. An extension to the Harp Bar on Hill Street Belfast, The New Orpheus is a stunning monument to one of Belfast’s lost architectural treasures, the Orpheus Ballroom, York Street (1932). The Dark Horse and you can enjoy some of the finest coffee and Suki tea served in Belfast. You can also appreciate the superb decor and special atmosphere with beautiful antique surroundings, furniture and artefacts from some of the city’s most famous hotels and buildings from bygone times – all providing a rare and unique glimpse of Belfast’s historical past…Nestled along a narrow, cobbled alleyway, The Duke offers a traditional Belfast welcome of craic, music and humour in contrast to the modern, fashionable establishments currently blowing into the surrounding streets.  All these bars are owned by rhe same people and, all within yards of eachother, but YOU MUST pay a visit here, in the midst of all the bars; The Friend at Hand is a unique whiskey off-licence combined with a mini museum charting the whiskey distilling history of Belfast. Browse and buy from the biggest collection of Irish Whiskeys available anywhere and get exclusive access to own brand 13yr old whiskeys. https://whiskytours.scot/seven-deadly-sins-whisky

Paul McLean

Your Host Paul Mclean

Some further reading  https://whiskytours.scot/whisky-or-whiskey

Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2019/01/7-deadly-sins-whisky-tour-northern-ireland/

Tamdhu 10 Years // Tamdhu Batch Strength

Tamdhu with a sherry influence but some 40 years apart…

First there is the Tamdhu 10 Year Old bottled in the 1970s (one of the first single malt bottlings after the 8 Years), then we have the latest Tamdhu Batch Strength released a couple of months ago.

 

 

Tamdhu 10 Years - bottled 1970sTamdhu 10 Years - bottled 1970sTamdhu 10 yo
(40%, OB late 1970s, 75 cl)

Nose: very fresh, with sherry notes (marmalade, raisins, cooked fruits), acacia honey or mead, malty and some floral / minty notes. Soft but very pleasant. Goes on with very light heathery peat and whiffs of old books. Mouth: sweet and creamy, a tad caramelly at first (fudge), then more towards herbal notes with a little smoke. A little grainy / grassy edge in the background. Cooked fruits again, maybe just a little OBE too (silver polish). Finish: quite long, a bit more oak now and the same toffee / fruity sweetness.

Not a well-known classic perhaps, but still a very nice old-style dram. Elegant, fresh (even after so many years in the bottle) and with a lovely whiff of smoke.

Score: 87/100

 

 

 

Tamdhu Batch Strength 003Tamdhu Batch Strength 003Tamdhu Batch Strength
(58,3%, OB 2018, Batch #003)

Nose: decomposing leafs and wet earth, mixed with chocolate notes and fudge. Hints of mocha en some pepper. Quite some savoury touches and brown bread. Caramel and overripe plums. Lacking a bit of fresh, fruity notes in my opinion. Mouth: quite heavy, with dark hints of burnt sugar with plenty of spices (cinnamon, pepper, clove). Dark bread again, as well as some green oak. Dark chocolate and hints of espresso towards the end. Finish: long, quite hot, on earthy notes, spices (especially cloves) and burnt sugar.

Not bad. Of course the higher strength makes this come across more powerful, intense and flavoursome, but I’d definitely go for the old style if we bring them down to the same strength. Complexity, depth and elegance is worth more to me than 18% more alcohol. Available from The Whisky Exchange among others.

Score: 82/100

Article source: https://www.whiskynotes.be/2019/tamdhu/tamdhu-10-years-1970s-tamdhu-batch-strength/

Off-the-Beaten-Path Single Malt Exclusives—Auchroisk and Balmenach at K&L California – Scotch Whisky News

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Special Single Malt Finds You Won’t Want to Miss

While Auchroisk and Balmenach might not be the most familiar names in Scotch, that certainly doesn’t mean that they aren’t producing world-class bottlings. Quite to the contrary, they are quietly producing some of the most compelling bottlings in the market. When we originally tasted this pair in Scotland, we were immediately struck by how perfectly composed they were. These are real sleepers that more than deserve their place in the spotlight. The Auchroisk is the perfect pick for those who like their single malts heavy and rich. A Speysider through and through, it is both tropical and spicy with impeccable balance. It’s little wonder this distillery has earned such a devoted cult following. The Balmenach is every bit as compelling, serving up a heady, complex, and wild ride. Malty and rich, but not without its subtle moments, it is sure to become an instant favorite for many. Both are unbelievable values, selling for a fraction of what you’d expect given their pedigree. If you are looking to expand your whisky-drinking horizons, these are well worth the visit.

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2006 Balmenach 11 Year Old “Old Particular” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) ($54.99)

The Balmenach Distillery is one of Speyside’s oldest. Originally licensed to James McGregor in 1824, it was likely running illicitly for years before. The distillery sits hidden behind Lethendry hill right on the banks of the river Spey outside the town of Cromdale. The distillery has changed hands many times over the last two centuries and was mothballed on occasion as well. In 1997, the distillery was sold to its current owners, Inver House, which also sells the Balblair, Old Pultney, Knockdhu, and Speyburn whiskies. All of those brands have taken center stage over the last decade or so, while the distillery in Cromdale remains more or less unknown to the outside world. Save for a few old Flora Fauna official bottlings, the Balmenach name is not really marketed, and the distillery produces primarily for blending. While the distillery isn’t particularly architectural, the stark white buildings on the green landscape can be quite beautiful. Equally beautiful is the fine spirit coming out of the six pot stills on site. The distillery continues to use worm tubs to condense their spirit, while the relatively tall thin necks of the still provide elegance to the spirit. The resulting whisky is full of rich maltiness and peppery spice. If you love the malt-driven Speyside style then this Balmenach is a must try at this price. Whisky snobs will probably snort at the unknown here, but the adventurous will be roundly rewarded for trying something new. At this price, you can afford to risk it!

David Othenin-Girard | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 13, 2018

This gnarly little Balmenach is the first from the distillery we’ve ever bottled. The odd, little-hidden distillery is the unsung hero the year—no one seems to be familiar with it, but everyone who tries it understands why we bought it. After the initial funky whiffs blow off, the whisky opens to an inviting array of malty flavors, grainy and fresh, it takes a drop of water to tease the exceptional nuance of this awesome cask. With water, it delivers marmalade on warm biscuits, freshly picked pears, and then, leaves with digestive cookies and tea. Like a baby’s bum, it is really smooth and soft.

Jeffrey Jones | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 10, 2018

This is from a distillery that we don’t get to see often as a single-malt bottling. In many ways, it is a very pretty whiskey. The nose is really nice with sweet honey and spice aromas. In the mouth, the sweetness continues but is balanced out with a pleasantly dry finish. With water, it opens up and becomes more complex with honey nuances and a dry finish.

Andrew Whiteley | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 01, 2018

Both upon first tasting this in Scotland, and again once the cask arrived, the very first thing to pop into my head when nosing the glass is sake. It’s a bit unusual for a whisky to remind me of one of Japan’s other great exports, but there is a magical umami savor in the nose of this whisky, coupled with a delicate fruitiness that I can’t shake as reminiscent of one of the finest Junmai sakes I’ve ever tasted. Moving into the more traditional realm of baked fruit pies and coarse brown sugar in the raw, this whisky also has a gentle and sweet side to it. Baking spices on the back end of the palate coupled with a surprisingly lengthy and dry finish, make this 11 year old from an obscure distillery a secret winner in our extensive lineup of new casks. It is infinitely more complex than you’d expect such a young whisky to be.

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1996 Auchroisk 21 Year Old “Hepburn’s Choice” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) ($89.99)

Let’s get the hardest part out of the way – It’s pronounced “Ah-thrusk.” This non-peated nutty and spicy malt is the result of hot and fast whisky making. A quick mash of the malt, a short fermentation period, and a rapid boil in the wash still leave this whisky heavy and rich. It is a style that makes it a cult favorite for drinkers and blender’s alike. Located just south of the Burn of Mulben and east of the River Spey, Auchroisk was originally built to supply JB with malt for their famous blend. There have been distillery bottlings since 1986, but it is more common to see this gem of a distillery bottled as single casks from independent bottlers. Happily, we work with the best independent bottlers to find the best casks, and this one really shines. The roasted character from the hot production has mellowed over 21 years into a rich and complex blend of honeyed granola and roasted chestnuts. Perfect for a cold winter’s night by the fire.

David Othenin-Girard | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 13, 2018

Part of the problem with bringing in forty casks at once is that several of our bottlings fall under the radar. In general, were ok with that because once people make it around to tasting the sleepers they begin to realize the incredible diversity of the whiskies that we have to offer. Auchroisk is a good name that almost no one knows. We powered through the last of the limited release this year, which the distillery couldn’t sell at the MSRP of $400, but our customers demolished at $250. Now, we’re offering a similarly aged product from this excellent distillery for only $90, and no one seems to have noticed. Their loss is your gain! This magnificent example of one of the quintessential Speyside flavor profiles is firing on all cylinders. The big nose of cake frosting and oak spice reminds me very much of the 25 year old, but with more purity. The palate is pointed and peppery, until you add the requisite dash of water. Then the nose pops with an opulent mineral quality, something like a northern Rhône white (but not like floral Viognier). The palate is now absolutely overflowing with flavor. Citrus peel, candied apples, malted cocoa, tropical fruit salad—it’s an absolute stunner. When people finally get around to this little whisky, they’ll be kicking themselves they didn’t notice it sooner. And this PRICE, I mean COME ON!

Joe Manekin | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 05, 2018

This is an example of a cask-strength whisky that is surprisingly supple, balanced, rich and showy— just a complete tasting single malt before any water is added. In fact, I don’t think you need to play around with water on this one, it simply tastes great and gives so much right out of the gate. Soft and with a hint tropical notes, it also offers suggestions of Manila mango on the nose. This is an easy-to-drink, delicious single malt for under $90.

Andrew Whiteley | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 01, 2018

Of the many casks we brought in this year in the sub-$100 range, I think this is my favorite of the no-peat variety. (And not just because it’s the one currently in my glass.) The weight and texture of this malt is gorgeous. It’s perfect without water, being full and nutty. Dominated by golden cereal grain and toasted nuts. The color says bourbon barrel, but the inherent character of the malt makes it feel like it’s seen a short finish in a sherry butt. There is a great spice cake and fresh Dutch crunch roll/brioche note that I almost always associate with sherried whisky. The finish is super clean and lengthy. For me, this is pure enjoyment in a bottle.

Jeffrey Jones | KL Staff Member | Review Date: December 01, 2018

Another hidden treasure from the world of single malts. The nose has honey and wax aromas, but comes across clean and fresh. In the mouth, the entry is sweet with pure and delicate flavors. With water, the nose really opens up with floral notes coming up and, in the mouth, dry flavors balance out the flavor profile. There are no smoke aromas or flavors. A fantastic bargain for single malt lovers.

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2019/01/off-the-beaten-path-single-malt-exclusives-auchroisk-and-balmenach-at-kl-california-scotch-whisky-news/

The Whisky Barrel “Exclusive bottlings to liven up January – hurry, they’re selling fast!” – Scotch Whisky News

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Our Remaining Exclusive Bottlings of 2018

We selected some truly great single malts and grains in 2018. From GlenDronach to Laphroaig; Dumbarton to Strathclyde

Here are a few of our excellent Exclusives which are running low on stock!

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2019/01/the-whisky-barrel-exclusive-bottlings-to-liven-up-january-hurry-theyre-selling-fast-scotch-whisky-news/

THE SCOTCH MALT WHISKY SOCIETY RETAINS PRESTIGIOUS AWARD TO END YEAR ON A HIGH – Scotch Whisky News

SMWS toasts awards success

THE SCOTCH MALT WHISKY SOCIETY RETAINS PRESTIGIOUS AWARD TO END YEAR ON A HIGH

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society (SMWS) is finishing 2018 on a high as its most-awarded year to date.

In a year that has seen the Society celebrate its 35th anniversary, with a number of celebratory events and special bottlings, they’ve received unprecedented recognition of their whiskies and venues.

The most recent award win was the accolade of Independent Bottler of the Year in Whisky Magazine’s Independent Bottlers’ Challenge competition – the sixth time they’ve won in the past nine years.

Alongside the top award, the Society also won the regional Whisky Magazine awards for Independent Bottler of the Year for Campbeltown, Lowland, Grain, Irish and Japanese whiskies as well as the overall award for Bar Group of the Year.

Their Edinburgh venue at 28 Queen Street was also highly commended in the Whisky Bar of the Year category.

These final accolades conclude the year of awards, which include wins in the Luxury Masters competition, 11 awards in the International Wine and Spirits Competition, 12 awards in the Scotch Whisky Masters, and an unprecedented seven double-gold medals out of our seven total whiskies submitted at the San Francisco World Spirits Competition.

As well as a haul of awards, 2018 has seen significant exciting developments including the opening of The Society’s newest venue, at 78 Northcote Road in London.

There was also a series of special events and tastings held throughout the year as part of their 35th anniversary celebrations, including a live online tasting, broadcasting The Vaults across the world.

Commenting on the success of 2018, Kai Ivalo, Spirits Director at The Scotch Malt Whisky Society, said: “We’re delighted to end our 35th year with this level of award recognition, but we’re also looking forward to an even more successful 2019 with an exciting events programme for our members.

“Alongside the quality of our single cask single malts and unique blends, we will be offering our members opportunities to share discoveries with their fellow like-minded community, and new ways to connect with each other.”

Only members of the SMWS can access its exclusive supply of award-winning single casks, drawn straight from the barrel and bottled at natural strength (undiluted) – producing a wide variety of intriguing flavours and characters. Being a member means becoming part of an open-minded, curious and adventurous group of whisky lovers who delight in discovery and exploration.

Annual membership starts at £65, with renewal at £61.50, but the SMWS offers a range of options for new members up to and including its Pioneer Welcome Pack at £130.

SMWS membership brings like-minded individuals from all around the world together, with access to an ever-changing collection of single cask whiskies, exclusive tastings, venues and partner bars as well as shared whisky wisdom through their knowledgeable staff and Unfiltered member magazine. 2019 also brings an exciting schedule of unique events for members to participate in. 

To buy membership to The Scotch Malt Whisky Society, visit: https://bit.ly/2zofcP4

Notes:

About The Scotch Malt Whisky Society 

  • The Scotch Malt Whisky Society was established in Edinburgh in 1983 and now has more than 26,000 members and branches around the world
  • The SMWS bottles rare single cask, single malt whisky, and a range of other spirits
  • The Society bottles single malts, unique single casks and exclusive blends
  • The Society has bottled whisky from more than 137 distilleries from Scotland and beyond
  • The Society offers a new batch of around 30 single cask, single malt whiskies every month
  • The Society offers a variety of membership’s packages which can be tailored. Please see https://bit.ly/2zofcP4
  • For more information about the Society, visit https://bit.ly/2OiBSWs
  • Twitter: @SMWSUK Facebook: @thesmwsuk Instagram: @smws_uk

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2019/01/the-scotch-malt-whisky-society-retains-prestigious-award-to-end-year-on-a-high-scotch-whisky-news/

K&L California “A Year of Whisk(e)y in Review” – Whisky News

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A Year of Whisk(e)y in Review

2018 has been a very exciting year for whisk(e)y at KL. From our direct-import exclusives to rare one-off bottlings and everything in between, our shelves have been graced with an impressive bounty. With the year coming to a close, we thought it a perfect opportunity to revisit some of our top whiskey offerings of 2018. Whether you are a whiskey maven from way back or are just beginning to explore, the selections below are sure-fire winners and welcome additions to any collection.

Top Collectibles

The Scotch boom continues to plow full steam ahead with age-statement bottlings garnering the greatest attention. The confluence of demand and the inherent scarcity of these bottlings have driven prices sky high. Thanks to our close relationships with the distilleries and bottlers, we’ve tracked down more than a few of these collectibles at unbeatable prices.

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

1996 Bowmore 22 Year Old “Old Malt Cask” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) $149.99 View

2005 Highland Park 12 Year Old “KL Exclusive” Refill Sherry Hogshead Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml) $159.99  View

Glengoyne 25 Year Old Single Malt Whisky (750ml) $299.99 View

1965 Carsebridge 52 Year Old “Sovereign” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Scotch Whisky (750ml) $349.99  View

1984 Caol Ila 34 Year Old “Old Particular” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) $375.00  View

 

Old Particular

Our “Old Particular” portfolio continues to be a resounding success. With the proliferation of no-age-statement whiskies, it’s been a boon to have a seemingly unending source of single barrel exclusives that not only carry their age, but also come in a breathtaking range of styles and expressions. Consistently among the top bargains in the market, “Old Particular” is the go-to for scores of whisky lovers.

2010 Glen Garioch 8 Year Old “Old Particular” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) $49.99 View

2006 Balmenach 11 Year Old “Old Particular” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) $54.99 View

2007 Benrinnes 11 Year Old “Old Particular” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Scotch Whisky (750ml) $54.99 View

1995 Loch Lomond (“All Malt”) 22 Year Old “Old Particular” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Grain Scotch Whisky (750ml) $89.99 View

1994 Miltonduff 24 Year Old “Old Particular” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml) $129.99 View

Bourbon

When it comes to spirits in America, bourbon continues to reign supreme. Tried and true brands are snatched up with abandon, while a stream of new distillers continue to enter the market. It truly is the golden era of bourbon. Our buyers David Othenin-Girard and Andrew Whiteley have worked tirelessly to seek out the finest expressions available while leaving the others on the cutting room floor. Below is a small sampling of the fruits of their labor.

Henry McKenna 10 Year Old Bottled in Bond Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whiskey (750ml) (Elsewhere $32) $29.99 View

Basil Hayden’s Kentucky Bourbon (750ml) $34.99 View

Old Forester KL Exclusive Single Barrel #0755 (Warehouse H, Floor 7) Straight Kentucky Bourbon Whisky (750ml) $39.99 View

Smooth Ambler “Big Level” Wheated Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml) $54.99 View

Booker’s “Kitchen Table 2018-4” Kentucky Straight Bourbon Whiskey (750ml) $59.99 View

Little Book 2018 Release “Batch #2 – Noe Simple Task” Blended Straight Whiskey (750ml) $79.99 View

Japan Canada

For the discerning whiskey drinker, Japan and Canada continue to be a go-to source. Japan’s top expressions stand shoulder to shoulder with Scotland’s best, while Canada continues to be a driving force of innovation. No matter how you cut it, the whiskies from these countries have rightfully earned their place on the international stage.

Lot 40 Single Copper Pot Still Canadian Rye Whisky (750ml) $31.99 View

Helios Distillery “Kura The Whisky” Rum Cask Finished Pure Malt Japanese Whisky (750ml) $59.99 View

Nikka Coffey Still Japanese Malt Whisky (750ml) $59.99 View

Nikka “Taketsuru” Pure Malt Japanese Whisky (750ml) $59.99 View

Suntory “Hibiki Japanese Harmony” Japanese Whisky (750ml) $64.99 View

Whistle Pig “Farmstock” Rye Crop No. 002 Whiskey (750ml) $69.99 View

Whistle Pig 14 Year Old The Boss Hog 5th Edition “The Spirit of Mauve” Straight Rye Whiskey (750ml – 1 bottle limit, ships as 1.5L) $499.99 View

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Article source: http://www.whiskyintelligence.com/2018/12/kl-california-a-year-of-whiskey-in-review-whisky-news/