Inbox is our 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 was born! It features items from around the world of whisky and is published by us each Friday. Within Inbox we will write a few lines detailing 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. Here's the news that caught our attention this week ...
Balvenie > Speyside comes to London!
The guys from the famous Speyside distillery of Balvenie have created an interactive whisky experience in the centre of London. The 'Whisky Den' is located in Tavistock Street (nearest tube - Covent Garden) and offers everyone the chance to witness some of the hand crafted skills that make Balvenie whisky so special. Marketed as 'bringing a piece of Speyside to London', a creative installation has been created which will evolve over the duration of the 'Den'. It is open to everyone every day between 1pm and 8pm and will run until Sunday 5 June. There is also a sampling bar within the installation, which offers drams of the Balvenie core range plus a couple of special limited edition expressions.
Diageo > Two special Feis Isle whiskies announced
The Islay whisky festival, known as Feis Isle in Gaelic, starts today and runs until Sunday 28 May. Diageo have announced a special release from both of the distilleries that they own on the island - Caol Ila and Lagavulin. Historically, these whiskies are sold on a first come, first served basis and always sell out quickly.
The Caol Ila Bodega Cask was filled in February 2000 and is a single ex-sherry cask whisky release of 600 bottles. It has a natural cask strength of 64.3% ABV and the cask was selected by Caol Ila's long serving distillery manager, Billy Stitchell. The Bodega Cask will go on sale from Monday 23 May, which is Caol Ila's festival open day, and will cost £79.95 a bottle. The Lagavulin 13 years old has been maturing in a refill ex-sherry cask since February 1998 and the cask was selected by lond serving warehouseman Iain McArthur. It has a natural cask strength of 51% ABV and only 588 bottles will be available. Again, this will cost £79.95 a bottle and will be available from tomorrow (Saturday 21 May) at the Lagavulin distillery open day.
Highland Park > Two new releases
Highland Park, the multi award winning distillery located on the Orkney islands, has announced the release of two new whiskies. Both are exclusive to the travel/Duty Free sector and will be available around the world. The Leif Eriksson (pictured on the right) is named after the Icelandic Norseman who is widely regarded as being the first European to ever reach the North American continent in the 11th century. He was a regular visitor to Orkney, which has a strong Nordic history. The whisky has been matured in ex-bourbon and ex-sherry casks, although these sherry casks are unusually made from north American oak rather than European oak. Leif Eriksson is bottled at 40% ABV and will cost around the € 65.00/£ 55 mark.
The second release is a 1978 Vintage that joins the popular travel retail Vintages range. The other four whiskies in the range are bottled at 40% ABV but this comes in at 47.8%. As yet we are unable to find the retail price of this - can anyone help us out? The designs on the packaging are images of a dragon wood carving found during a Nordic archaeological dig in 1904.