Inbox is back after its festive break and is ready to bring you more news! Inbox is a weekly round up of whisky news and PR type material that has found its way in to our email inbox. Sadly, we cannot write full articles or do justice to every piece that we receive, so Inbox has been born! It features items from around the world of whisky and is published by us each Friday. Within Inbox we will write a couple of lines about each press release/piece of news/PR event that we have received and provide links, where possible, for you to find out further information if you want to. There is quite a lot to get through this week, so grab a decent dram, sit back and we hope that you enjoy ...
Arran > Machrie Moor released
The award winning Isle of Arran Distillers have released their first ever peaty, smoky whisky on to the market. It is called Machrie Moor and is named after the moorland on the west of the island where the peat for the whisky was dug up. The whisky will be released annually and this first release contains just 9,000 bottles. It is being sold in Arran’s key worldwide markets – France, Germany, Japan, Russia, the UK and the USA. The release is also in new packaging with the bottle made from dark green glass with gold lettering. Machrie Moor is bottled at 46% ABV and will retail at around £40 from specialist whisky retailers and Arran’s website. Isle of Arran Distillery Managing Director Euan Mitchell says “we’re very proud of our first peated whisky and thought it merited a new look to separate it from the regular un-peated Arran malt. This peated expression of the Arran single salt perfectly captures the rugged beauty and lore of the landscape”.
Maker’s Mark > President steps down
The President of Maker’s Mark distillery in Loretto, Kentucky is stepping down this April. Bill Samuels Jnr. has been the head of the famous American bourbon distillery for 35 years and has announced that he will retire shortly. He has overseen the growth of the brand from cult bourbon into a best seller. Bill Samuels Jnr. is the son of the founder of the modern Maker’s Mark, Bill Samuels Snr, and the seventh generation to continue the family’s tradition of bourbon making which was first started in Kentucky by Robert Samuels in 1784. His role will be taken over by his son, Rob Samuels. You can hear an interview with Bill Samuels Jnr. about the announcement, his time at Maker’s Mark and his thoughts for the future by downloading last week’s WhiskyCast podcast (episode no.298 16/1/11).
Midleton > new releases announced
The Irish distillery of Midleton have released two new limited edition whiskies under the Midleton name. The first is exclusive to the new Irish Whiskey Collection in Dublin Airport Terminal 2 – this is a 19 year old pot still whiskey matured in ex-bourbon casks and bottled at a cask strength of 53.7% ABV. There are only 200 bottles and each will cost €260. The second is exclusive to The Celtic Whiskey Shop in Dawson Street, Dublin. It is 14 years of age, has been matured in ex-bourbon casks and is bottled at 46% ABV. There are just 270 bottles released and each will cost €225. The brand’s owners Irish Distillers Pernod Ricard CEO Alex Ricard said, “we are giving consumers more opportunities to experience the wonderful whiskey complexities of Midleton with these new single cask, single pot still expressions”.
Rabbie’s Trail Burners > two new tours for 2011
Luxury tour company Rabbie’s Trail Burners have announced two new whisky based tours for their 2011 portfolio. Both are eight days long and take in some of the most spectacular landscape and distilleries that the whisky world has to offer. The first is the Whisky Coast Explorer Tour, which will take in visits to the isles of Mull, Skye and Islay and Scotland’s west coast. It includes visits to Bruichladdich, Bowmore, Kilchoman, Laphroaig and Oban distilleries. The second is the Islay, Edinburgh & Speyside Tour which will take in many of the distilleries on the first tour, before moving on to Dalwhinnie, Benromach and Glenlivet plus the Speyside Cooperage. To book or get further information, go to www.rabbies.com.
Whyte & Mackay > Shackleton whisky returns home
The whisky that was recently found preserved under the Antarctic ice has been flown back to Scotland by private jet. The bottles of Whyte & Mackay whisky, which accompanied polar explorer Eric Shackleton on his failed expedition to the South Pole in 1907, have been temporarily returned by The Antarctic Heritage Trust to Whyte & Mackay for analysis. Three bottles have been removed and will undergo the analysis by Whyte & Mackay’s legendary master blender Richard Paterson, before being returned to Antarctica to be placed back where they were discovered. For further information, go to www.whyteandmackay.co.uk or watch the short video below.