NEW WHISKY RELEASE: OCTOBER 21st Cider Cask Finished Virginia-Highland Whisky (Batch 2) – American Whiskey News


NEW WHISKY RELEASE: OCTOBER 21st Cider Cask Finished Virginia-Highland Whisky (Batch 2)


It’s officially Fall y’all and we’re excited to release Batch #2 of our Cider Cask Finished Virginia-Highland Whisky at our Lovingston Visitors Center on Saturday, October 21st! Be among the first to try it along with our seasonally inspired cocktails and a bite to eat from the Dr. Ho’s food truck.

Cider Cask Finished Virginia-Highland Whisky is a culmination of Old World and New World whisky making, showcasing 100% malted barley whisky made on-site in Virginia married with whisky from Scotland and finished for 10 months in cider casks from our friends at Potter’s Craft Cider in Free Union, Virginia.


Tasting Notes:  Notes of vanilla, apple and pear are evident on the nose. On the palate, soft creaminess and sweetness from the malt mingle with caramelized wood sugars from the oak, pairing nicely with a touch of acidity from the cider barrel.  Enjoy neat, with a cube or a splash of water or in your favorite Fall-inspired cocktail.  Retail Price: $64.59      Production: 260 cases in 750mL bottles

Where Can You Find It?

Outside of the Visitors Center, this whisky will also be available in select stores throughout Connecticut, DC, Georgia, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Jersey, New York and Virginia beginning in late Fall.



Ever wanted to own a cask of whisky? Our Cask Society program allows you to purchase a cask of our coveted Virginia Single Malt Whisky. As a Cask Society member, you will also gain instant access to specialty perks as you wait for your whisky to age.

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 Whisky club bottles single casks from an Indian distillery for the first time in its ongoing mission to explore the spectrum of flavours in whisky

The Scotch Malt Whisky Society (SMWS) [] is spicing things up in October with the release of two new Indian single cask malts from a prominent distillery in Goa. The distillery is the 134th to be bottled by the Society, and marks the first time they have bottled from the Goan distillery, which rarely releases aged single cask, single malts.

In traditional Society style, the bottles are named after their flavour and aroma – ‘Exotic rainforest fruits’ and ‘Lip-smacking and cockle-warming’. Both whiskies are six years old and were matured in refill ex-bourbon casks. Priced at £145 each, the bottles will be available to Society members via a ballot from 19 October.

‘Exotic rainforest fruits’, which is one of only 174 bottles drawn from the single cask, was distilled on 28th February 2010 and is released under the Society’s Sweet, Fruity Mellow flavour profile. The Society’s expert Tasting Panel describes the whisky as taking the drinker “into the realms of the exotic with a profusion of tropical fruits combined with the woody humidity of a rainforest.”

‘Lip-smacking and cockle-warming’, which is one of only 168 bottles, was distilled on 31st March 2010 and was placed in the Juicy Oak and Vanilla flavour profile by the Society’s Tasting Panel. They note the whisky as having flavours of “caramel apple granny cake in a wooden cabinet, toasted coconut and pears in honey.”

Distillery 134 is located in Goa on the western coast of India. The warm, tropical climate of the region, where the average temperature reaches up to 30°C, has a significant impact on the whisky maturation process.

While the casks are stored in an underground temperature-controlled cellar, the heat makes the whisky mature faster than it would in colder climates such as Scotland. It also leads to more whisky evaporating – the ‘angel’s share’ of Indian whiskies is around 8% compared to around 2% in Scotland. This high level of evaporation makes it exceedingly difficult to age the whisky for longer periods, making the six-year-old bottling exceptionally rare.

This combination of temperature combined with the carefully selected American white oak casks gives the whiskies distinct flavours such as spices, marmalade, chocolate, coconut, dry fruit, vanilla and honey.

Kai Ivalo, Spirits Director at the Society, said: “Our aim at the Society is to search the world for exciting single casks to share with our members. These two casks from Goa are perfect examples – it’s fascinating to see how the different climate and faster maturation process there has created such an amazing array of juicy, sweet and spicy flavours. This is the first time we’ve bottled from distillery 134 and we can’t wait to hear the feedback from our members.” 

‘Exotic rainforest fruits’ and ‘Lip-smacking and cockle-warming’ will be released in the UK and EU on 19 October. Due to the high demand anticipated for these new releases, SMWS will hold a ballot to ensure all members have an equal opportunity to purchase.

Other key SMWS branches such as Australia and the US will launch the bottles later in 2017.

@smwsuk #smws 


134.1 – ‘Exotic rainforest fruits’ 

  • Distillation date: 28/02/10
  • Goa, India
  • ABV: 57.9%
  • Age: 6
  • Outturn: 174
  • Price: £145
  • Sweet, Fruity Mellow
  • Cask: Refill ex-bourbon

We found ourselves careering at some pace into the realms of the exotic as a profusion of tropical fruits combined with the woody humidity of a rainforest. Generous helpings of sweet mango, ripe banana and passion fruit were teased by light and floral lychee, white lily and carnation. Warming spice entered from the left with cinnamon, nutmeg and masala chai tea with a sweet earthy note that developed into new leather-bound books before turning to oregano, lemongrass and camomile. A luscious and rich vein continued throughout like hot toffee, milk chocolate and thick cream and finishing in the most splendid fashion with candied orange and apricot brandy.

134.2 – ‘Lip-smacking and cockle-warming’ 

  • Distillation date: 31/03/10
  • Goa, India
  • ABV: 58.0%
  • Age: 6
  • Outturn: 168
  • Price: £145
  • Juicy, Oak Vanilla
  • Cask: Refill ex-bourbon

The initial nose is sweet (honey, custard donut, candy corn, caramel apple granny cake); then the wood influence comes (wooden cabinets, toasted coconut, dusty tobacco). The palate also has initial sweetness (pain au chocolat, chocolate raisins, brown sugar), followed by big woody spice (oak, anise, chilli, liquorice). The reduced nose continues that duality – sweetie necklaces, pears in honey and ginger cake against wooden shelves in a shoe shop and pipe racks. The reduced palate is similar, but somehow more integrated – Madeiran honey cake (bolo de mel), bourbon biscuits, Oddfellows, sweet chilli and muscovado on toasted staves – lip-smacking, tasty and cockle-warming. 



About The Scotch Malt Whisky Society

  • The Scotch Malt Whisky Society is an international whisky club that bottles rare single cask, single malt whisky, and a range of other spirits
  • The Society was established in Edinburgh in 1983 and now has more than 26,000 members and branches around the world
  • The Society only ever bottles single casks – each cask is unique, making every Society bottling a limited edition
  • The Society has bottled whisky from more than 134 distilleries in its history
  • The Society releases a new batch of around 20 single cask, single malt whiskies every month
  • The Society offers different levels of membership
  • For more information about the Society, visit
  • The Society doesn’t reveal distillery names as they have a gentleman’s agreement with the distilleries and it compromises their ability to secure further stocks; where possible we’d appreciate it if you could not reveal the names

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New Single Barrel of Auchroisk 23 Year at K&L California – Scotch Whisky News


New Single Barrel of Auchroisk 23 Year

While our previous cask of Auchroisk 15 year was a hot deal while it lasted, this advanced and equally brilliant 23 year old edition may have it beat. Absolutely brimming with sweet stone fruit, rock sugar candy, and syrup, this barrel of 53.3% cask strength single malt whisky from Diageo’s Highland distillery brings yet another bang for your buck under the guise of Old Particular. The nose has all the classic aromas of malted barley, vanilla, and oak spices, but it’s the initial blast on the palate where this whisky ultimately shines. Rich and robust on the finish, it’s a classic Scottish malt through and through and the unbeatable price reflects our continued effort to combat the current market forces with affordable, mature, and exciting whiskies straight from the source. If you’re a fan of straight-up single malt, not saturated sherry or super peaty whiskies, but old school, fruit and vanilla-laden Scotch with a rich and supple mouthfeel, then it doesn’t get better than this Auchroisk 23. The Johnnie Walker distillery makes classically flavored whiskies much like its neighbor Benrinnes, loaded with cocktail fruit, sweetness and charm. Any time I can nab a single barrel of 23 year old Highland whisky of this quality (at cask strength, no less) for under $100, I’m going to take that offer. I’m expecting about 200 experienced KL whisky customers to do the exact same thing.

1994 Auchroisk 23 Year Old “Old Particular” KL Exclusive Single Barrel Cask Strength Single Malt Whisky (750ml) – $89.99


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Inchmurrin 2003 ‘Executive’ (WhiskyNerds)

Inchmurrin 2003 'Executive'

Inchmurrin 2003 'Executive'


Remember the two Inchmurrin 2003 casks bottled by The WhiskyNerds early August? There was a bourbon-matured ‘Order’ and a sherry-matured ‘Law’, both among the best value drams I’ve had this year.

A small part of both casks was kept aside and married together for two months to create a beautiful vatting of presidential allure: The Executive, influenced by two types of wood.



Inchmurrin 2003 'Executive' (WhiskyNerds)Inchmurrin 2003 'Executive' (WhiskyNerds)Inchmurrin 14 yo 2003 ‘Executive’ (54,6%, OB for The Whiskynerds 2017, sherry + bourbon vatting #17/171-1)

Nose: you get the bourbonny oak first, but the sherry grows over time. In the end I find it closer to the sherry bottling (which is great news), perhaps with a bit more spices. Lovely pink grapefruit again, sour (cran)berries and juicy plums (yellow ones this time, instead of red plums?). Just a hint of ripe pineapple from the bourbon cask. A little mocha and fruit tea. Aniseed. Beautiful. Mouth: bright fruity notes, in the style of Irish whiskey and Littlemill. Grapefruit, passion fruits, raspberries. Hints of guava juice. Again a little more spicy heat, if memory serves me well. A little tobacco as well. Finish: long, drier now. Cinnamon, plums and fruit tea.

Added yellow fruits and added spices: it doesn’t trump the others but it’s certainly on the same level. If you’ve missed the first two bottlings, then this is a must-have. Around € 100 again: excellent value for money. Check Dutch retailers like today, I’m sure they will be gone before you know it.

Score: 91/100

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Tamdhu Unveils Limited Edition ‘Lantern’ Tin – Scotch Whisky News

Tamdhu 10YO_Xmas_Tin_150dpi

Tamdhu Unveils Limited Edition LanternTin

Tamdhu Speyside Single Malt Scotch Whisky has released a special edition lantern-shaped whisky gift tin, inspired by its 1897 Victorian roots.

The limited edition Tamdhu 10 Year Old Lantern tins are designed to showcase the distinctive and elegant Tamdhu bottle shape.

Iain Weir, Tamdhu Brand Director, commented: 

“The new gift tins are a tribute to the Distillery’s 120 year history, and are inspired by the Victorian lanterns which would have been common in 1897 when Tamdhu was founded.  

“The lantern design perfectly presents the beautiful shape of the Tamdhu bottle, and the natural colour of the exclusively sherry oak matured malt whisky inside.  

“It’s the perfect present for lovers of good whisky, and we believe they’ll be a very popular gifting option for Tamdhu fans this Christmas.”

The classic 10 Year Old is the signature malt from Tamdhu with a wondrous natural colour, and the softness of vanilla and sugared almonds on the nose balanced by fresh oak and cinnamon. Bursting with fruit and spice, which gently yields to toffee, there is a richness of sherry oak on the palate with a gentle hint of peat smoke.

Tamdhu has received a string of awards in recent months, including a Gold Award for Tamdhu 10 Year Old at the International Sprits Challenge 2017.

The limited edition Lantern tins will be available online at, globally and at a range of high-end UK retailers including Waitrose, Booths and Oddbins, with an RRP of £38.49. After use, a battery-operated tea-light can be placed inside the gift tins.

Tamdhu is owned by one of Scotland’s leading, independent family-owned distillers, Ian Macleod Distillers. Tamdhu was born on the banks of the River Spey in 1897 – an era when anything seemed possible. When obstacles were there to be overcome, an age of the Can-Dhu- Spirit. Its quality is defined by the hint of peat in its malted barley, the natural Speyside water that is drawn directly from the Tamdhu spring and the 100% exclusive use of only the finest sherry oak casks.

Tamdhu Logo 2015

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Benromach 1977 Dark Angle-min


The Benromach Distillery Company Ltd has announced the release of an exceptional single cask vintage. Only 225 bottles of Benromach 1977 will be available worldwide. The release of this product builds on the success of previous vintage releases from the 1970’s.

Quietly maturing for 39 years in a single Refill American Hogshead, Benromach 1977 (ABV 56.0%) is a deliciously smooth and sweet dram with vibrant notes of ripe banana and luscious passion fruit. Citrus undertones and dried tobacco mingle with toasted oak leading to a fresh menthol finish.

This exquisite dram, from cask number 1268, is presented in an evocative decanter-style bottle, inspired by the curving shapes and silky textures of the distillery’s gleaming copper stills. The bottle nestles inside a rich, dark oak wooden box, reminiscent of the wood used in the original distillery washbacks.  A beautifully written, hardback book accompanies the whisky, which delves into the history of the distillery and the personalities who handcraft the whisky using time honoured techniques passed down for generations.

David King, Director at Benromach said: “Almost four decades have passed since cask 1268 was laid down to quietly mature in the traditional dunnage warehouses that surround Benromach Distillery. While this beautiful whisky drew its incredible depth, character and luxurious flavours from the wood, all around the cask, the distillery was evolving and changing. After it closed in 1983, the distillery lay silent for more than 15 years before it was revived by the Urquhart family.

“These carefully selected casks give Benromach lovers around the world the chance to own and taste a moment in time from the distillery’s rich history. We’ve been sampling this cask over the years and feel only now that it is ready to be unveiled.”

The Benromach 1977 is available worldwide from the 4th of October 2017, with an RRP of €1,500. Prices in local markets will vary depending on local taxes and duty.

For more information on Benromach, and to explore the wide range of expressions available, please visit

Benromach 1977-min


Benromach Distillery

Originally built in 1898, Benromach Distillery was brought back to life when the Urquhart family realised a lifelong dream to own a distillery and purchased it in 1993. The distillery was extensively re-equipped over a five-year period before it was officially opened by HRH Prince Charles in 1998.

In reopening Benromach Distillery, the Urquhart family decided to create a classic Speyside single malt – a style that draws its influence from Speyside whiskies pre-1960s.

Benromach Distillery is located on the outskirts of the ancient market town of Forres. A four-star visitor centre is open to the public throughout the year for tours and tastings. Benromach Distillery is a member of the world-famous Malt Whisky Trail.

Tasting Notes

Colour: A beautiful dark gold hue from 39 years spent lingering in a single Refill American Hogshead.

Nose: 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.

Taste: 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.

Nose with water: Subtle coconut and exotic fruits combine with ginger and lime aromas.

Taste with water: A smooth sweetness emerges with warm bursts of white pepper and overtones of pear, kiwi and lime, followed by dried tobacco and a trace of toasted oak on the finish.

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Balvenie Peat Week 14 Years

Balvenie Peat Week

Balvenie Peat Week

The Balvenie Peat Week 14 Years Old (2002 Vintage) is the result of trials undertaken in 2001 by Malt Master David Stewart, at a time when very few Speyside distilleries used peat in whisky production. Ever since then they’ve had one Peat Week per year, doing peated runs using 100% Highland peat to dry their malted barley (30 ppm phenols but the non-phenolic particles are more prominent).

This is the first wide-scale release of this style (following a peated Triple Cask for travel retail in June 2017), matured in American oak casks. The distillery already hinted at the release of a 50 years old Balvenie Peat Week in the future.



Balvenie Peat Week 14 YearsBalvenie Peat Week 14 YearsBalvenie 14 yo 2002 ‘Peat Week’ (48,3%, OB 2017, 3000 btl.)

Nose: I like this kind of peat, it’s warm, earthy and not at all loud. Lots of tobacco notes, sweet almonds and hints of vanilla. Subtle floral overtones and zingy lemons. Hints of overripe yellow apple as well. Nice farmy touches in the background (after all Dufftown is closer to Brora than it is to Islay). Mouth: sweet smoke, like sugared Lapsang tea, alongside earthy and lightly bitter elements (cloves, charred wood, smoked oranges). Hints of crème brûlée, honey and still a floral edge (bergamot perhaps). All-spice, a little liquorice. Finish: long, soft and smoky, with drying tea, cocoa and cereals.

Certainly worth trying. It’s much smoother and less medicinal than an Islay whisky, but it’s well made and well balanced and it brings something different to the table. Hard to get outside of the UK, best option is TWE at the moment (or Master of Malt soon). Around € 65.

Score: 87/100

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Brand New from the Glenfiddich Experimental Series at The Whisky Shop – Scotch Whisky News


New Release

The third release in the Glenfiddich Experimental Series, this 21 year old has been finished in casks that previously held icewine – a sweet wine produced from grapes that have frozen on the vine and are picked by moonlight at temperatures of -10ºC. Now available to pre-order at The Whisky Shop, while stocks last.

Next day UK delivery available
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This Speyside single malt has been finished for six months in French oak Icewine casks from the renowned Peller Estate winery in Niagara, Canada. After visiting the estate in January 2016, Malt Master Brian Kinsman experimented with various combinations of Glenfiddich and icewine casks, finding that only the rarer whiskies could cope with the extra intensity. The result is Winter Storm, a limited edition 21 year old bottled at 43% abv.  The nose has tropical fruit notes and candied sweets with an underlying wine character. The palate has soft candied fruits, Turkish Delight, lychee and a rich drying sensation, before a short and crisp finish.

£199 Pre-Order Now
Orders will be dispatched w/c 16th October


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The Dalmore 50 Years

This is post n° 2500, I can’t believe we’ve gotten this far with just one liver!
It had to be something special…


Dalmore 50

Dalmore 50


Master Distiller Richard ‘The Nose’ Paterson celebrated his 50th year in the whisky industry last year, and at the beginning of 2017 the distillery presented the limited edition The Dalmore 50 Year Old.

Its journey started the 31st of December 1966 in American oak barrels. In 2003 it was transferred into Matusalem sherry casks from González Byass. In 2012 it went into Colheita 1938 Port pipes from Graham’s for four years until being finessed for 50 days in two Champagne barriques which were used to matured the 2015 Pinot Noir vintage at Domaine Henri Giraud.

It’s not the oldest release they ever released but the Champagne definitely makes it a rather unique recipe. Add an exquisite Baccarat decanter with a silver stag and a hand-crafted display cabinet and the result is a £ 50.000 expression that is hand-filled to order.



I was lucky enough to try this special whisky with Richard Paterson the other day, in an event at TastToe, hosted for the press and some of their best clients.

In the first part of the event, we tried some of the special releases that marked Paterson’s work anniversary:

  • The Dalmore Quintessence (finished in five different Californian red wine casks)
  • The Dalmore 35 Years (Matusalem + Port finish)
  • The Dalmore 40 Years (Matusalem + first-fill bourbon finish).

Each worth being the highlight of a tasting, but this one kept going…

The second part was called Deconstruction of the Dalmore 50. We tried all the flavour components that contributed to the character of the Dalmore 50: a Matusalem VORS sherry, a Graham’s 20 Years Tawny Port and a glass of Henri Giraud Champagne (a name I hadn’t heard of, but well worth remembering).

Ultimately, we tried The Dalmore 50 Year Old. A maximum of 50 bottles will be filled upon request and to make sure we didn’t have to open a crystal decanter, Paterson distributed tiny bottles with 7 ml of the whisky inside. While most of the audience knocked it down there and then, I admit I nosed it for a long time but poured it back into the bottle because I wanted to honour it with more time, attention and a proper copita.




Dalmore 50 YearsDalmore 50 YearsThe Dalmore 50 yo
(40%, OB 2017)

Nose: delicate and rather ethereal, with lots of rubbed orange peel and orange oils, marmalade, eucalyptus and menthol. There’s a hint of vanilla, something of ripe banana and guava, as well as some nutty notes and soft hints of yellow plums. Honey cake. Just a hint of beeswax and shoe polish, and something fragrant, maybe vetiver and bergamot. Quite some leathery notes too. Beautiful nose, very balanced. Mouth: not too thick, and like many whiskies of this age, a mix of different styles. There’s certainly a great tropical side to it, with clementine and passion fruits, alongside the marmalade again. There’s also a big leathery side and lots of tobacco leaves, including the sourness that comes with the old oak. Mint, cinnamon, fruit teas. Then some juicier sherry notes (red fruits, nuts) and a little dark coffee towards the end. The oak influence is easy to notice, but it’s by no means a tannic whisky. Finish: medium long, with hints of sour cherries, Earl Grey tea, bitter oranges and liquorice.


A fitting celebration dram for one of the most passionate people in the whisky industry. A glorious nose (like Paterson himself) and a palate that is vibrant, well rounded and reasonably woody. It almost seems unfair to score this: you don’t buy it as a value for money expression. That said, the excellent 35 Years and 40 Years were even more to my liking. Around € 60.000 in Belgium, both available bottles have been sold already.

To your health, Richard, and sincere thanks to TastToe.


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Limited Edition Glenfiddich “Walking in a Whisky Wonderland!” at Loch Fyne Whiskies – Scotch Whisky News


Limited Edition Glenfiddich

Pushing the boundaries of whisky maturation, the Glenfiddich Experimental Series launched last year with the incredible Project XX and IPA Experiment. Now the third in the series has finally arrived, and it was worth the wait! Now available to pre-order at Loch Fyne Whiskies, Glenfiddich Winter Storm is only available while stocks last.

We ship worldwide
Next day UK delivery available

Glenfiddich Winter Storm

The third in the Glenfiddich Experimental Series, this limited edition 21 year old Speyside single malt has been finished for 6 months in icewine casks from a renowned Canadian winery. There’s tropical fruit and candied sweets with underlying wine notes on the nose. The palate has soft sweet notes of candied fruits, Turkish Delight and mouth-watering lychee, before a drying sensation from the icewine, and a short and crisp finish.

£199 Pre-Order Now
Orders will be dispatched from next week (October 16th)

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