Benromach 2007 cask #335 (for Hocksheads)

If I’m not mistaken Hocksheads is a German whisky community managed by Pat Hock. They regularly release bottlings and today we’re trying their Benromach 2007 single cask. Kind of an older single cask version of the standard Benromach Peat Smoke so to speak.


Benromach 12 yo 2007 (57,9%, OB for Hocksheads 2019, first-fill bourbon barrel #335, 206 btl.)

Nose: rich, fairly sweet and very ashy, with leafy notes and some chalk, but also a fresh citrusy side and some youthful yellow apple sweetness. A little vanilla and fudge. Mild pepper. The peatiness is not the most powerful on the market but it’s nicely medicinal. 

Mouth: oily texture, starts citrusy, with hints of roasted pineapple as well. Builds to be thick and earthy, with ashes, vanilla and mint. Some herbs and a rather big medicinal side again (for a non-Islay whisky).

Finish: medium length, with kippers, ashes and oak spice. Still some warming vanilla and fruits.

Benromach with an above-average peat level. It shows a nice texture, traces of Springbank but also nice fruity notes. Complexity is slightly limited but a nice choice nonetheless. Around € 95 from for instance.

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Malt Messenger Bulletin by Andrew Ferguson – We have a New Laddie Cask! – Scotch Whisky News

Malt Messenger Bulletin

We Have a New KWM Laddie Cask It Will Be Gone in a Flash!

It has been a while since we’ve sent out a Malt Messenger Bulletin all on its own. It is a shorter newsletter that I reserve for special occasions or when there is whisky news that just can’t wait for the next full edition. This time it is both.

If you follow us on Social Media, or are one of those customers who frequently mine the website looking for new whiskies, then you might already be aware that we have just received a new cask of Bruichladdich. Our second ever cask of Bruichladdich arrived in-store on Wednesday. In just 3 days 2/3 of the 240 bottles have already sold. It is possible the remaining bottles will not last until the end of the weekend. Hence the haste in putting out a Malt Messenger. More details and my tasting note on this lovely new whisky can be found below.

I hope this Malt Messenger Bulletin finds you well, and in time to grab a bottle of the Bruichladdich before it sells out. If not, there will always be another whisky. We are expecting our 2nd edition of the Glenfarclas 15 Year KWM Cask Strength later this month!


Andrew Ferguson
Kensington Wine Market

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

@scotch_guy, Instagram: @thescotch_guy/

or @kwmwhisky and Facebook:

Introducing: Our 2nd KWM Exclusive Bruichladdich Cask 

The Bruichladdich 2007 KWM Fresh Bourbon Cask!

Our 2nd KWM Exclusive single cask of Bruichladdich is a 12 year old from a Fresh Bourbon Cask, #336. It was distilled from unpeated optic barley on March 16 2007, and bottled November 14, 2019 at 58.6%. Only 240 bottles, and we don’t expect them to last long. It is over 2/3 sold in 3 days! – Limit of 2 bottles per customer!

Bruichladdich 2007 KWM Bourbon Cask 336 – 58.6% – 12 Year – Fresh Bourbon Barrel –  My Tasting Note: “Nose: creamy, honeyed and malty with loads of fruit and a gentle salty maritime flourish; juicy and toasty with soft decadent oak spices; Starburst fruit candies and French vanilla ice cream; the barley lends the nose a soft minerality. Palate: silky to start with loads of honey, more French vanilla and then a bold surge of juicy fruits and crisp barley; the salty maritime tones arrive later with decadent spices; thick and oily; more Starburst fruit candies, honeydew melon, bitter orange and singed lemon peel; candied ginger, cinnamon sticks and licorice root; later allspice; toasty and nutty; once again the barley shines through. Finish: long, fresh, coating and creamy; decadent vanilla, juicy fruits and crisp spice. Comment: thick, creamy and toasty with loads of fruit, barley and a touch of crisp Islay air; young and Fresh without a rough edges and a complexity beyond what you expect for just a dozen years in the cask; this is a naked Laddie, clean and elegant!” – $135 – Limit 2 bottles per customer!

Free City-Wide Delivery in Calgary Other Options! 

Free Delivery in Calgary for Orders Over $50, and Loads of Deals To Be Had!

As with many other small and independent businesses in the city, we are getting creative to continue serving our customers and keeping the business going. We have taken precautions in-store to ensure the health and safety of both our staff and customers. Details on that below! We are also offering options to continue serving those of you in quarantine or who are taking extra precautions with regards to social isolation.


– We are offering free delivery for orders over $50 placed online or over the phone, and will do our best to deliver within 72 hours.


– Place an order, we’ll let you know when it is ready. Call us when you are out front or parked in the back lot and we’ll bring it out. Simple as that!


– Want to send someone a care package? All gifting options are still available. Quarantined parents and closed schools qualify as a “wine emergency”. Gift cards are also available and can be used over the phone.

If you are able, please submit your order online. We will answer any questions you might have before finalizing and processing your order. You are not automatically billed when you submit your order.

We will do our best to answer and process as many phone orders as we can. Call us at 403-283-8000. We are offering some great deals too. More on that below, see the bottom of the Malt Messenger!

Customers are still welcome to come in to the store to pick up orders as well as browse and purchase in-store. We are routinely disinfecting commonly touched surfaces and have hand sanitation stations around the store.

Let us know how we can continue to help and serve you in these challenging times!

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 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.


Andrew Ferguson
Owner Scotchguy
Kensington Wine Market
Calgary, Alberta, Canada

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New release! A brand new Balvenie at The Whisky Shop – Scotch Whisky News

New release alert!

Introducing the highly-limited Balvenie 19 Year Old Edge of Burnhead Wood. A 19-year-old dram made from home-grown barley malted at The Balvenie Maltings, ingredients locally-foraged in the distillery grounds, water from the Robbie Dhu spring and fresh heather from Burnhead Wood.

Lively and vibrant, enjoy notes of fig and geranium oil on the nose. Honey, cloves and carmelised baked dates are layered on top of delicate citrus and spice on the palate, with a lingering finish of oak and dried blossom.

An exceptional dram to add to your collection.
Available only while stocks last.

The Balvenie 19 Year Old
Edge of Burnhead Wood

Customers who purchase a bottle of The Balvenie 19 Year Old Edge of Burnhead Wood within the next two weeks will be offered the opportunity to join Balvenie Malt Master David Stewart and UK Brand Ambassador Alwynne Gwilt for an exclusive online tasting. Simply purchase a bottle in the next 14 days, and we’ll follow up with an invite.


Our team are working hard to dispatch all orders quickly and securely, however due to increased demand and local restrictions, delivery may take longer than advertised. We thank you for your continued patience and understanding.

Free UK Delivery over £99

We are pleased to offer free standard UK delivery (3-4 working days) on all orders over £99 (including VAT). To take advantage of this offer please select ‘Free Standard UK Delivery’ during checkout.


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Bruichladdich 1990 (Poise &Perseverance)

Weird, I can’t seem to find any information about this bottling. It’s a Bruichladdich 1990 matured in a Rivesaltes wine cask and the label says Poise and Perseverance.

However it is only available from one retailer. They also have a Macduff and Tomatin but you can’t find other references to this bottler (or is it merely a series?). If you have further information, let me know…

Rivesaltes is a region in the South of France, where they make different kinds of fortified wines, white and red.


Bruichladdich 28 yo 1990 (47,4%, Poise Perseverance 2019, Rivesaltes wine cask finish)

Nose: rather on the dry side, certainly not as grapey as I feared. Pretty much like a sherry cask, with walnuts, leather and hay. Some fruit cake and berries (cranberries and strawberries). Toasted oak. A little orange peel. Nice and rather complex. Mouth: a little more grape juice now, going towards kirsch and plum eau-de-vie, as well as some leafy notes and pepper. Some sour notes as well as a tannic side. Bread crust. Leather again. Finish: quite long, with clove and ginger, sour berries and the underlying toasted wood.

A nice nose, but it picks up winey elements along the way, losing a few points. Not a bad first encounter with this bottler / series. Available from Master of Malt.

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Glen Grant 1995 (Whisky Fair)

Another ‘lost’ festival bottling from The Whisky Fair 2020. This time an ‘official’ festival bottling: Glen Grant 1995.

While I’m looking forward to trying it, I keep thinking of the times when this would have been the entry-level bottling. Nowadays it is the premium festival bottling.  


Glen Grant 24 yo 1995 (50,6%, The Whisky Fair 2020, bourbon barrel #19461, 129 btl.)

Nose: lots of apples, rhubarb, greengages. A very natural Speysider. Melons and lime. Really fresh and orchardy. Hints of panettone cake and honey. Very fruity, a tad simple but no complaints. Mouth: similar thoughts. All on custard, apples and pears. Lemons. Also light peppery notes and oranges. Then some ginger, mint and other oak spices. Light vanilla and a hint of mocha towards the end. Finish: medium, quite zesty, with hints of cumin, vanilla and some Seville orange. A very late hint of marshmallows as well, nice.

Great to see an indie Glen Grant, which is definitely bolder and better than most of the officials. Just in at eSpirits.  

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Buffalo Trace Distillery Releases Experimental Wheat Bourbon – American Whiskey News

Buffalo Trace Distillery Releases

Experimental Wheat Bourbon

Bourbon Aged Four Years, Cut with Water, Aged Eight More Years

FRANKFORT, Franklin County, Ky (April 23, 2020) Buffalo Trace Distillery is releasing its first experimental whiskey for 2020, a wheat recipe bourbon aged for four years, cut with water, then re-barreled and left to age for another eight years.

The barrel, filled with Buffalo Trace’s wheat mash recipe and entered into the barrel at 114 proof, was put away to age in one new barrel on Dec. 10, 2007. After four years of aging in Warehouse C the barrel was removed, the bourbon was cut with water to lower it down to 100 proof, and then put back into the same barrel and left to age another eight years in the same warehouse.

Although unusual to interrupt the aging process, the distilling team at Buffalo Trace is pleased with the results.  “We’ve always known water was a necessary component in making whiskey,” stated Master Distiller Harlen Wheatley. “This experiment helped us to understand how important a role water actually plays in whiskey production.  The result of this experiment led us to a bourbon that is actually one of my favorite experiments.”

Wheatley describes this bourbon as having a “nose that is sweet and floral, with notes of oak, vanilla, and a bit of leather. There’s a really smooth creamy mouthfeel here.  The taste is a pleasing balance of butterscotch, honey, and wood with a crisp finish.”

This is the 23rd  experimental release from Buffalo Trace Distillery, having started with its first experimental release in 2006. In total, there are more than 25,000 experimental  barrels of whiskey aging in the warehouses of Buffalo Trace Distillery, the largest number of experimental barrels ever held in inventory at the National Historic Landmark Distillery, and most likely the world. Each experimental barrel has unique characteristics that differentiate them in distinct ways. Some examples of experiments include unique mash bills, types of wood, and different barrel toasts. Buffalo Trace also has an experimental warehouse, Warehouse X, which is designed to explore the extent of environmental influences on the flavor profiles of whiskey.

The Experimental Collection is packaged in 375ml bottles, and each label includes all the pertinent information unique to that barrel of whiskey. These whiskeys retail for approximately $46.99 each and will be available in May.  Experimental Collection releases are generally quite small and have limited availability.

About Buffalo Trace Distillery

Buffalo Trace Distillery is an American family-owned company based in Frankfort, Franklin County, Kentucky. The Distillery’s rich tradition dates back to 1773 and includes such legends as E.H. Taylor, Jr., George T. Stagg, Albert B. Blanton, Orville Schupp, and Elmer T. Lee.  Buffalo Trace Distillery is a fully operational Distillery producing bourbon, rye and vodka on site and is a National Historic Landmark as well as is listed on the National Register of Historic Places. The Distillery has won 35 distillery titles since 2000 from such notable publications as Whisky Magazine, Whisky Advocate Magazine and Wine Enthusiast Magazine. Its Col. E. H. Taylor, Jr. Four Grain Bourbon was named World Whiskey of the Year by “Jim Murray’s Whiskey Bible 2018” and its William Larue Weller and Thomas H. Handy Sazerac were named 2nd and 3rd finest whiskeys in the world, respectively, in the “Jim Murray Whiskey Bible 2020.”  Buffalo Trace Distillery has also garnered more than 1,000 awards for its wide range of premium whiskies. To learn more about Buffalo Trace Distillery visit

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Clynelish 2010/2011 (Single Malts of Scotland – Reserve Casks)

Elixir Distillers released Parcel No.2 of the Single Malts of Scotland ‘Reserve Casks’. For more information about this small batch series, check my review of the first parcel.

We’ll look at the Clynelish first. It is a composition of 5 casks from 2010 and 2011.


Clynelish 8 yo 2010/2011 (48%, Single Malts of Scotland ‘Reserve Casks’ 2020, Parcel 2)

Nose: nice and friendly, perhaps a little more peachy than expected. Plenty of sweet pear, hints of pineapple candy and guimauve. Then some fragrant candles and blossoms. Less waxy and mineral this time, although there is a hint of clay. Mouth: again really fruity, with peaches, sweet lemons, orange squash and bananas. Vanilla custard. Then more classical waxy notes and soft grassy touches. Herbal honey. Finish: long, slightly more malty and zesty now, with green spice and a minty / mineral note.

Already beautiful for a youngster. The candied, fruity side makes this a great introductory expression. Easy to recommend. Available from The Whisky Exchange of course.

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Octomore 10.3 Islay Barley

Octomore 10.3 was distilled in 2013 from Islay Barley (Concerto variety) grown by farmer James Brown. It is aged for six years, only in first-fill American oak barrels from Jim Beam, Heaven Hill, Buffalo Trace and Jack Daniels.

It is closely related to Octomore 10.1 and it’s interesting compare both and look for differences that must be owed to the barley’s specific location.

At ‘only’ 114 ppm of phenols, it is less heavily peated than most other Octomore releases.


Octomore 10.3 6 yo 2013 (61,3%, OB 2019, 24000 btl.)

Nose: quite mature, with hints of TCP, lemon freshness and heathery, almost floral smoke. Quite mineral as well. Some apple sourness and pear sweetness in the background, as well as leafy notes, thyme and leaven. Whiffs of vanilla after a while.
Mouth: oily and salty start, with sharp lemons, then apples and more maritime notes. Truckloads of ashes. Becomes wider and slightly sweeter. Rather more medicinal than other Octomores in my opinion. Grapefruit skin. Finish: long and warming, with roasted ham, floral peat, lemons and mineral notes.

Clean with a thorough Islay character, and a peatiness that comes across more maritime and medicinal. Good. Still available from The Whisky Exchange or Tyndrum Whisky for instance.

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The Whisky Shop “Pre-order: Port Ellen 40 Year Old 9 Rogue Casks” – Scotch Whisky News

Port Ellen 40 Year Old 9 Rogue Casks
Pre-order now available!

About to launch: a limited release of Port Ellen’s oldest spirit to date.

Distilled at the original Port Ellen in 1979, these nine casks of whisky were discovered and brought together by the master distiller to craft a unique limited edition release: the oldest and most limited to date. Each cask was matured for at least 40 years before all nine were married together and bottled at a natural cask strength of 50.9% abv, free from any artificial colouring. Presented in a beautiful case, under lock and key, this release is limited to just 1,380 bottles worldwide. The nose is delicate, with a mild smoke complemented by burnt orange, fresh herbs and a grassy note. The palate brings a much more pronounced smoke, alongside rich leather and pipe tobacco with a gentle wood spice. the finish is long and satisfying with a wisp of smoke remaining.

Don’t miss out – pre-order today!

Pre-Order Now

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Clynelish 2008 (Whisky Sponge)

The first whisky I’ve seen with Angus Squarepants and a cat named Serge on the label. It is a Clynelish 2008 in the Whisky Sponge series, sourced from the Signatory Vintage stocks.



Clynelish 2008 - Whisky SpongeClynelish 11 yo 2008 (53%, Signatory Vintage for The Whisky Sponge 2019, first-fill bourbon barrel, 250 btl.)

Nose: very natural Clynelish, with the classic chalky notes, grasses, cut apples and candle wax. Light pear and stone fruits. White flowers and almonds as well. How it should be. Mouth: an active cask, bringing some oaky vanilla, white pepper and coconut to the table. Minty notes and an oily, almost ethereal side. Plum eau-de-vie. Always this waxy texture and light resinous touches, including hints of Play-Doh. Pear and kiwi underneath. Finish: medium, on vanilla, wax and lemon (zest).

Quite a young Clynelish, not too complex, but already passing with merit. Sold out but you might want to keep an eye on future releases through Copper Monument.

Score: 87/100

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